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UK £1.30 




















Hack'n'slash and Shoot-em-up 


survive in Rimrunner. 
The latest game from Palace is 
a manic shoot-em-up for the 
Atari ST 

Now available for the Amiga and the ST — 
Barbarian The Ultimate Warrior, the classic 
hack'n'slash game. 

Available from all good computer stores, or by post from Pa 
Sofiware. The Old Fin ge, 7 Caledonian Road. London N1 91 
ST versions (Rimrunner, Barbarian) E14.99 plus80pPE*P 
Amiga (Barbarian) £19.99 plus 80pP&P Access and 
Barclaycard holders phoned 278 0751 




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A breathtaking galaxy on the outer rim of the universe. Worlds with astonishing creatures and animaled\3D 
graphics, a thrilling scenario bursting with humour, the like Uf which you've ne*ver seen. Everything about 
CAPTAIN BLOOD makes it th* type ot game you just HAVE to play. 

Hours and hours of discovery, exploration, dialogue, (hyperspace wapts) and hotshot low-level flying 
through rugged mountain ranges and dizzying canyons. • 

New sensations are guaranteed in this tragic, moving, funny and thrilling adventure. CAPTAIN BLOOD is a 
game for everyone, breaking new ground in the universe of computer entertainment. Welcome to the age of 
the bio-game. — 


I N FOG RAM E \^||J^V 



















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Novagen - nice guys in a 
'Mercenary' industry: 
Jason Spiller travels into the 
depths of suburban Birming- 
ham to find two laid-back, 
laugh-a-minute characters 
who are quite content to sit 
back and wait for genius pro- 
grammer, Paul Woakes, to 
come up with the latest in a long 
line of hits for Novagen. 

Life, the Universe and Llamas: 

After David Stewart's interview with 
Jeff Winter (see elsewhere in this is- 
sue) Jeff has come up with TEN of his 
sensational Trip-A-Trons (Col- 
ourspace II) to give to the lucky win- 
ners of this competition. So brush up 
on your knowledge of camels and Lla- 
masoft and get to work answering 
those questions now! w 

The List: 

Jason Spiller puts to- 
gether the first half of a 
comprehensive list of 
just what is available 
for the ST in the enter- 
tainment sector, and 
starts off with arcade 


Action News: 

All the latest goings-on in the ST games world with, amongst other items: 
a day at the cinema for Mitch to see the latest Cinemaware products; 
Telecomsoft announce a new budget label as well as quite a few games; 
up in the air with MicroProse, and the first interactive laser disk game, 
Dragons Lair, from Microdeal. A 

Published by: 

Gollner Publishing Ltd, 

10 Theatre Lane, 


West Sussex, 

P019 1SR. 

Tel (0243) 783932. 

Fax (0243) 789809. 


Hugh Gollner. 

Assistant Editor: 

Martin Moth. 

Art Editor: 
Greg Percival. 

Regular Contributors: 

Mick Clarkson, 
Steve Kennedy, 
Steve Merrett, 
Andy Mitchell, 
Martin Moth, 
Jason Spiller, 
David Stewart, 

Advertising Manager: 

Jean Gollner. 


Twin Plates, 



Printed by: 

Redwood Web Offset, 
Yeomans Way, 

Distribution By: 

Tavistock Road, 
West Drayton, 

Copyright notice: 

No material from this publica- 
tion may be reproduced in any 
way without the publisher's 
written consent. Correspon- 
dence: all enquiries or re- 
quests for information must be 
made by letter; we are unable 
to deal with such requests by 




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H/nts C 77ps; 

A regular column where you, the reader, 
will be invited to contribute to the maga- 
zine with any valuable hints, playing tips 
and useful cheats that you have found for 
games on the ST. Steve starts out by 
giving useful information concerning, 
amongst others, Wizball, Defender of the 
Crown and Bubble Bobble. 

Megatest: Scrolling Shoot-'em-ups: 

Often playing into the wee hours of the morning, Mick Clarkson 
has put together a mammoth seven-page article on ten scrolling 
shoot-'em-ups available for the ST. 


Just who do the reviewers think they are? 
Our intrepid team of writers, reviewers, slaves, call them what 
you will, are introduced and prattle on for as long as space has 
permitted about themselves, their likes and dislikes, and any 
other irrelevant piece of information that you might wish to 




Tools of the Trade: 

Nick Clarkson brings 
you an in-depth 
megatest on 17 joys- 
ticks available for the 
ST . He ended up with a 
six-page report and 
severe bruises and 
blisters to his joystick 
hand! 30 

Test Drive Competition: 

Electronic Arts, in conjunction with ST Action, bring you 
the opportunity to win a day out at the Brands Hatch 
Driving School, where you could end up being taught 
circuit racing in an XR3i and eventually get to sit behind 
the wheel of a Formula First, the latest version of the 
Formula Ford single-seat racing car, and take it for a spin 
(hopefully not in the literal sense of the word!) around 
Brands Hatch. *r% 

Face to Face 
with Jeff Minter: 
Dave Stewart sou- 
nds out Jeff Minter 
on topics ranging 
from his love of lla- 
mas, goats and 
camels, to his latest 
visual extrava- 
ganza, Trip-A-Tron. 



Robtek relea u 


If this product works it will be the most 
revolutionary ever released for the ST. 
Robtek claim to have produced an 
emulation package that allows colour 
software to run on a monochrome moni- 
tor and the package is compatible with 
"hundreds, of games". Robtek are also 
releasing a mono emulator which will 
enable colour users to run mono- 
chrome-only software, such as, many 
wordprocessors, spreadsheets and da- 
tabase packages. The emulators will be 
on show at the forthcoming Atari Com- 
puter Show at the Alexandra Palace, 
22nd-24th April. For further details 
contact: Robtek Ltd, 4 Isleworth Busi- 
ness Complex, St John's Road, Isle- 
worth, Middlesex, TW7 6NL, Tel (01) 
847 4457. 


Virgin Games are releasing Scrabble De 
Luxe on the ST on April 1st (no fooling!). 
The game provides a convincing com- 
puterised opponent with 8 skill levels of 
play for up to four people. The game has 
a 23,000-word vocabulary and a host of 
features and enhancements that makes 
the ST version special, including mouse 
and menu support. 

MicroProse • more 
programmers please 

MicroProse has launched another re- 
cruitment drive aimed at the cream of 

European programming talent. The 
project is being headed by newly ap- 
pointed Software Development Man- 
ager, Tony Bickley. 

"The quality of European pro- 
grammers has never been better," says 
UK boss, Stewart Bell, "consequently, 
MicroProse has begun recruiting this 
talent to go and program in the USA, and 
work on our products for both UK and 
European markets." 

Bickley has an impressive track 
record; he has in the past worked with 
Thorn EMU, ASK, Melbourne House and 
Firebird. He will be overseeing all devel- 
opment work in the UK and liaising with 

MicroProse development teams all over 
the world." 

For further details contact: Tony 
Bickley, MicroProse Software Ltd, 2 
Market Place, Tetbury, Gloucestershire, 
GL8 8DA, Tel (0666) 54326. 

Other format to 
compete with Jez 

Rob Northern Computing have devel- 
oped a special disk format which allows 
Atari ST and Commodore Amiga pro- 
grams to be run from the same disk. 

The format allows both machines 
to treat the disk as normally formatted 
disks thus allowing all the usual DOS 
functions to be performed whether you 
are using GEMDOS or Amiga DOS. 

The system allows the simultane- 
ous use of 392.5k for ST storage and 
451k for Amiga storage and has the side 
effect of making the disks extremely 
difficult to pirate. 

Rob Northern has worked on disk 
formatting for over 4 years, developing 
1 770 DFS for Acorn and the 40/80 Dual 
format disk for Acornsoft. He has also 
worked on disk-protection systems for 
the ST and Amiga. Interestingly enough 
Jez San, of Starglider fame, is also work- 
ing on a similar system to be used for the 
release of Starglider II. Rob Northern 

Prism Leisure attacks 16-bit market 

Prism Leisure Corporation have announced the formation of three budget labels to 
cater for the 16-bit market. ST Leisure, Amiga Leisure and PC Leisure have been 
simultaneously formed to provide low-cost software for us who like a few more bits 
in our machines. ST and Amiga titles will retail for £1 2.99 while PC Leisure will be 
selling at £9.99. 

The labels will be launched with a budget of £500,000 for the acquisition and 
promotion of new products. ST Leisure's first few titles, due for release end of July, 
are: Terraforce (a very fast sideways scroller) , Artificial Dreams, Rocket Roger, Who 
Dares wins II. Other games due to be released this winter include: 'Z\ Pub Games, 
Battle Stations, Trap, Arac and 'Crystal' a three disk interactive film that has taken 
18 months to develop. 


claims that, while he knows of San's 
work, his is completely independent and 
separate research. For further details, 
contact: Rob Northern Computing, 4 
Orchard Close, Camelsdale, Hasle- 
mere, Surrey, Tel (0428) 51402. 

Hubbard joins EA 

Rob Hubbard, the UK's leading com- 
puter musician, has joined Electronic 
Arts. He is now working for EA's head- 
quarters in San Mateo, which I suppose 


no longer makes him the (JK's leading 
computer musician. 

Hubbard has been at the forefront 
of games for the past four years and has 
almost single-handedly been respon- 
sible for rftaking software houses spend 
time, money and effort on games music. 

Hubbard said of his decision: "My 
time at Electronic Arts convinced me 
that this was the right company for me to 
join. It could provide me with necessary 
support both technically and techno- 
logically, to develop my skills as a music 
artist to their full potential." 

Strip Poker 2 Plus 

Anco have significantly enhanced the 
ST version of Strip Poker which now 
features very high-quality, digitised 

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Software house with 
a difference 

Budgie (JK is certainly a software house with a difference - all its products are Public 
Domain. Budgie's Camy Maertens claims to have a team of programmers working 
on games for free distribution and is looking for others who wish to have their work 
distributed by the label. 

The first five Budgie products include: Damoid, a space invader variant 
written entirely in machine code; Blitz III, a version of the popular blast the buildings 
game; Football 88, a football management game written in Fast Basic and machine 
code; and Othello, an immaculate implementation of the classic board game written 
in Fast Basic. 

The games are public domaim, that is copyable without infringing any 
copyright, but Budgie do offer a service for those unable to obtain the products. They 
charge £2.95 for disk, duplication and packaging. For further details contact: 
Budgie UK, 5 Minster Close, Rayleigh, Essex. 

graphics! The new version is being titled 
Strip Poker 2 Plus, and means that the 
normal Strip Poker 2 will not be released. 
For further details, contact: Anco, 35 
West Hill, Dartford, Kent, DAI 2EI. 

Lords of Conques 

Lords of Conquest, Electronic Arts 
a ward- winning, conquer- the- world 
strategy game, is to be converted to the 

Lords of Conquest is comparable 
to the famous board game, RISK, but 
uses the computers power to add depth 
and variety. Play can be between a single 
player and the computer or up to three 
other players. Each player chooses 
home territories and tries to protect 
them while trying to capture territories 
belonging to his opponent. The game is 
strategically very advanced and re- 
quires careful manipulation of re- 
sources, such as, foot soldiers, Cavalry 
and fleets. The winner of the game is the 
first player to build three cities and pro- 
tect them for an entire year. 

Foxy Lady 


Martech have joined the scantily-clad 
female brigade in a bid to promote their 
latest game, Vixen. The game is set on a 
planet Granath which has been under 
siege for as long as the sky has met with 
the horizon - which is probably quite a 

The planet has been at the mercy 
of dinosaurs for millions of years and 
they have destroyed all but a few of the 
mammals and all of the humans. Our 
lone heroine, Vixen (the foxy lady of 
Granath) has been bestowed with magi- 
cal powers with which she must defeat 
the dinosaurs. 

Martech have digitised Vixen in 
both human state and in transformed fox 
state, which gives the game a film-like 
quality. ..Sounds like an excuse to digit- 
ise scantily-clad females to me! 

Vixen will be released on all major 
formats in April and the ST version will 
sell for £19.99. 

1st Home Computer 

Interactiue Laser 

Disk Game 

Microdeal have released a complete 
home micro interface which enables 
owners of the ST and a laser disk to play 
Dragons Lair, the hit interactive Laser 
game. However, the interface and soft- 
ware costs a total of £1 20 and requires a 
laser disk which still costs about £1 000. 
One for the richer games player, I think! 
For more details, contact: Microdeal, 
Box 68, St Austell, Cornwall, PL25 4YB, 
Tel (0726) 68020. 

An Afternoon at the Movies 

Are you old enough to remember the Saturday morning pictures? Well don't worry if you can't 
because Mirrorsoft intend to bring those good old days back again. Two of the main ingredi- 
ents of the kids' 'Saturday Morning Rush' were the 15-minute comedy short and the action 
serial, A regular comedy favourite with the kids was the 'Three Stooges' and for an action serial 
what could be better than the death-defying 'King of the Rocket Men'? And how does your 
youthful reporter know all these old details? Because Mirrorsoft recreated the whole thing at 
the National Film Theatre on Friday 25th March, complete with a pack of screaming kids to 
complete the atmosphere. 

The occasion was to launch the two newest additions to the prestigious Cinemaware 
Corporation range. The two titles being The Three Stooges and Rocket Ranger. Representa- 
tives of the company, plus two of their lucky teenage kids, made the trip to London from Los- 
Angeles to demonstrate their latest epics and later to lead the pandemonium which passed for 
group singing in the theatre. 

The current Cinema ware titles include Defender of the Crown, Sinbad, King of Chicago 
and S.D.I. The aim of the Cinemaware games is to create the impression of a movie with 
opening credit titles, a movie score and incredible graphics. All these aims have already been 
achieved with the existing games, but critics have complained of a lack of any real substance 
when the action starts. To this end, the company has promised that future products will 'beef 
up this aspect and Rocket Ranger will certainly have more to shout about. 

Although the new games are only available for the Amiga at present, they will be 
released for the ST in July. The Stooges game involves our knuckle-headed heros in the task 
of raising enough money to save Ma's Orphanage from the wicked landlord, plus a little extra 
to pay for the weddings of Ma's daughters. Money is gained by entering a Cracker Eating 
contest, taking jobs as waiters or entering a crazy boxing match. Needless to say, the action 
sequences involve bouts of slapstick chases and custard-pie throwing. The graphics displayed 
on an Amiga are certainly impressive and it's hoped the ST versions will be equally detailed. 

It is the year 1 94 1 , and flashing through the sky with a rocket pack on his back is the 
fearless Rocket Ranger who must save the world from the Nazi threat. Whilst foiling Hitler's 
plans to dominate the Earth from a Lunar Base, the Ranger also has time to rescue kidnapped 
scientists and their large-busted daughters! One action sequence from this game looks a lot 
like the arcade classic, Space Harrier. Controlling the small figure of our airborne hero, you 
must shoot down waves of advancing enemy planes as they fly towards you out of the screen. 
Further sequences require you to fight a German guard who is built like a brick air-raid shelter 
and dodge a hail of bullets whilst crossing an obstacle race. Your final task is to assemble a 
rocket and fly to the moon to rescue the zombie slave women from the Lunarium Mines. 

Hidden in one corner of the preview lounge was another (as yet untitled), Cinemaware 
game. The provisional title is 'Emperor of the Rising Sun' and it is a Japanese martial arts game 
which requires you to rise from a simple warrior to become the Shogun of Japan. The game 
appears to be 'Defender of the Crown' with fried rice! The only action sequence so far 
completed requires you to fend off spinning metal stars with your sword as they are thrown in 
quick succession by a ninja warrior. 

Having been lulled into a false sense of security, journalists were ushered into the 
cinema to be shown the future attractions on the big screen. The 'old movie' buff and writer, 
Dennis Gifford, was there to give a short introduction to the movie clips which included the 
classic Stoogie film containing the Oyster Stew routine, as this is included in the game. The 
next treat was the screening of the final episode of the Rocket Ranger serial. The latest news 
is that this serial is also about to be screened on television - which seems a very fortuitous hap- 
pening! While the computer press attempted to hide in the rear of the cinema, the kids were 
encouraged to boo and cheer as the hero saved New York from the terrible Disintegrator Ray. 

If you missed all the fun and noise in the original 'rush', there is still time to buy a bag 
of popcorn, put your feet up on the seat in front and prepare to cheer as the clowns and heroes 
of yesteryear come tumbling back. 

Grand Slam lines up 

Grand Slam Software, formerly Argus 
Press Software, has obtained the rights 
to produce the computer game of the 
Flintstones cartoon. The game will be 
released across most formats, including 
the Atari ST. 

The game is being developed by 
Teque Software Development with 
music by Ben Daglish. In the game, you 
are taken on an adventure of classic 
proportions by Barney and Fred who 
first set off for the Bedrock Super- Bowl 
to play bowling. However, Wilma has 
other ideas - she wants Fred to paint the 
living room in time for his mother-in- 
law's arrival. 

After a day painting, hindered by 
little Pebbles, you finally head for the 
bowling alley for the big match. Unfortu- 
nately, when you get back you find that 
Pebbles has gone missing and the hunt is 

It all sounds a bit domestic, but 
the graphics look great with very realis- 
tic representations of the original char- 
acters. The Flintstones is due to be re- 
leased at Easter, priced £19.95. 

Late News 

Grajid Slam does US deal 

Stephen Hall, Managing Director 
of Grand Slam Entertainments, 
has finalised a major deal with 
US leisure house, Datasof t . The 
three-year agreement will mean 
that Grand Slam takes over 
sales, marketing and distribu- 
tion of Datasoft products in 
Europe and Australia, while 
Datasoft will handle Grand Slam 
products in the States and 
Canada. Talking of the deal, 
Hall commented: "Grand Slam is 
now cemented in the market 
place, and this is by no means 
the last exciting new venture 
that will be seeing the light of 
day from us over the coming 
months. We've been spending a 
lot of time and effort on new 
products, new marketing opportu- 
nities and I'm feeling really 
very confident and excited about 
the future," 





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Screen shots from Atari ST version. 

Have you got 
what it takes.... be an KT 
undercover cop ? 

CBM 64/128 £9.99i.£11.99d 

SPECTRUM 48K £8.99i 

AMSTRAD £9.99t,£14.99d 

ATARI ST£19.99d 

AMIGA £24.99d 

U.S. Cold Ltd., Units 2/3 Holford Way, Holford, Birmingham B6 7AX. Tel: 021 356 3388 

Telecomsoft's Revolution 

Telecomsoft recently had a press conference 525 feet above London - in the 
Telecom tower! It was from here that Telecomsoft were showing six new games 
under development, or about to be released, for the ST market. Also, there is now 
going to be a new budget label so as to leave Firebird free to develop the more 
expensive quality games. Under the name of Silverbird, the packaging will be of a 
format similar to that of the Firebird chevrons, but in silver. Releases for the ST will 
range from £1 .99 to £9.95, with the first release being Thrust, at £9.95. 

As for Carrier Command, it is ALMOST complete and looks better each time 
I see it. Look out for a full review as soon as we can get our grubby little hands on 
a finished copy. 

A galactic trading and space war game with the working title of EPT is under 
development and promises to feature fast-moving, solid 3D graphics. Projected cost 
is £24.95 and according to Rainbird is 'Available soon'... 

The revolving lower caused problems for 
some of the guests! 

Legend of the Sword 

Legend of the Sword is an adventure, 
available in April for £24.95 , that fea- 
tures mouse-driven commands, ad- 
vanced parser, over 300 individual 
cameo illustrations, a save facility and 
an Oops/Undo command enabling you 
to backtrack from your previous com- 
mand. Also included is an 'innovative 
scrolling map feature'. 



UtftT or *ou. 

I i h I M i oo1 .-» 

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'iPilVU turjrcJ to fiaij'ii 

Icom Simulations 
signed up 

Icom Simulations UK, responsible for 
Deja Vu and other Macventure products, 
have been signed up by Telecomsoft 
and will produce six games for them over 
the next two years - three so-called 

'action-packed' games, and three ad- 
ventures. The first project is set in the 
Wild West and features gun-toting cow- 
boys, Indians, and various other desper- 
ate characters. Deja Vu 2 is also 
planned. Everyone concerned is said to 
be excited at the partnership. 


Due for release in May, Verminator is set 
in, of all things, an oak tree with 250 
locations! Apparently, the game re- 
volves around you playing the part of a 
vermin control agent, employed by the 
Tree Council to rid the oak of vermin. 
From what I've seen of the game, it is 
fairly reminiscent of Black Lamp in its 
layout, but with totally different game- 
play. Excellent cartoon-like graphics 
make it one to watch out for. Watch this 
space, as they say... 

Return to Genesis 

Return to Genesis is an absolute blinder 
of a game from Firebird, retailing at 

£19.95 and available almost as I write 
this. It is a horizontally-scrolling shoot- 

'em-up and in order to pick up extra 
weapons and features, you have to res- 
cue scientists who, in turn, give up their 
projects enabling you to evade the 
'baddies'. 'Fiendishly difficult' accord- 
ing to our Editor. Watch out for a full 
review next month. 

Jezglider II 

Starglider II is Jez San's sequel, incorpo- 
rating a revolutionary multi-format disk. 
The graphics are truly stunning, with 
over 80 characters in fast, animated 
action, and include such diverse crea- 
tures as Space Whales, Pac-worms and 
Manta Rays. The game will be available 
soon on Amiga and ST at £24.95. 


Silverbird are releasing Thrust, an 8-bit 
conversion that is somewhat of a cross 
between Asteroids and Scramble. It 
looks interesting enough and, due to its 
budget price, definitely worth checking 
out. It should be available by the time 
you read this article. 


MicroProse - High Flyers 

Early in February, an invitation came through 
the post inviting Hugh, our Editor, to 'a day of 
stunt flying with Stuart Bell and Major Bill 
Stealey' of MicroProse. Hugh, however, had 
other ideas and didn't fancy flying upside 
down, so 1 jumped at the chance to get back 
in the air. 

On the day in question, everyone fi- 
nally arrived at the MicroProse base in 
Tetbury.and we made tracks for Staverton 
airport, in Gloucestershire. On arrival, num- 
bers were drawn to find the order in which we 
would take to the air in a Zlin aerobatic 
aircraft. Unfortunately, I came out with trip 
1 3! To keep my thoughts off this piece of un- 
nerving news I volunteered to be in the first 
'spotter plane' of the day. This was a Cessna 
1 52 four-seater and, as we took off, Wild Bill 
Stealey climbed into the back seat of the Zlin 
and took off to meet up with us somewhere 
over the Gloucestershire countryside. Roger, 
the pilot, pulled up alongside, about 100 feet 
away and I managed to get a couple of shots 
of Wild Bill waving at us, clearly enjoying 
himself, before they peeled off into a series of 
loops, barrel-rolls and other aerobatic ma- 
noeuvres. We were then treated to a quick 
glimpse of the local area before we came into 
land. Jumping out of the Cessna, I immedi- 
ately made tracks for the waiting helicopter. 
This really is THE way to fly, and I'm currently 
pestering Hugh to upgrade the company car 
to a company helicopter! Somehow, I don't 
think it'll work... Anyway, we hovered straight 
up to 50 feet, turned through 1 80 degrees on 
the spot, and flew off. The pilot decided to 
show us what would happen if the engine cut 
out. However, to avoid damaging the craft 
and possibly ruining our day out, he flew 
safely out of the manoeuvre with a couple of 
hundred feet to spare. 

Back on the ground again, I headed off 
into the crew room for lunch and proceeded to 
get to grips with Gunship, as there were 
MicroProse games by the dozen running on 
different machines. On Gunship, however, 1 
ran into a spot of bother with a couple of Mil- 
24 Hind helicopters and a few SA-9 surface- 
to-air missile launchers. Fortunately, 'Wild' 
Bill was on hand to rescue me and, like a true 
all-American hero, took over the controls. To 
the accompaniment of self-made sound ef- 
fects, such as, 'Let's loose off a Hellfire on this 

Wild Bill Stealey clearly enjoying himself 

Commie' and 'Dagga, dagga, dagga. That's 
got the son of a b....!' , he shot down the two 
Hinds, blasted some infantry and got back to 
base in one piece. Phew! 1 guess it's all in a 
day's work, though! 

Finally, and I mean finally, as mine 

was the last trip of the day and the weather 
was closing in, Roger and 1 took off in the Zlin. 
I didn't get the exact figures for 'g' tolerances 
on the Zlin, but estimate that it is somewhere 
in the region of +8 and -5. Suffice it to say that 
it is enough for most aerobatic manoeuvres, 
including an outside loop! (This is where the 
plane does a loop, but is inverted at the 
beginning and end, and up the right way at the 

• i i V|| | 

I HIU -J V- 

The MicroProse team assemble for a 'gang photo'! 

top of the loop. It's an horrendous stunt to 
practice, as Roger will testify. He says he only 
practises them for the final two weeks before 
the stunt-flying season as, due to the g-forces 
involved (about -4g), all the blood rushes to 
your head and bursts all the blood vessels in 
your eyes and face. Thus Roger ends up with 
red, sore eyes and a thumping headache for 
about three days after the stunt.) 

We started off nice and gently with a 
couple of loops and barrel rolls. When I say 
gently, I mean not more than about 4.5g. 
Roger then threw it into a 'Cuban Eight', a 
figure of eight on its side. This is rather fun, as 
just after you are coming out of the inverted 
position at the top of a loop and are pointing 
at an angle of around 45 degrees towards the 
ground, you roll upright. Most unbalancing! 
Roger then asked if I would like to take control 
and fly for a while. I flew around for a short 
time to get the feel of the aircraft and then 
stuck it in a 45 degree dive. On asking Roger 
what the entry speed for a loop was, I was told 
240 knots, and so, as the ASI (Air Speed 
Indicator) touched 240, I gently but firmly 
pulled back on the stick, and the aircraft rose 
heavenwards. I must have had quite a g- 
loading though, as when I leant back to look 
for the horizon coming up over the tailplane, 
my headset was pulled off my head! So there 
I was, upside down, with one hand on the stick 
pulling through the loop, and my left hand 
reaching to rescue the headset in order to 
hear what Roger was saying! I was a bit rusty 
on the flying after nearly two years out of the 
pilot's seat, but improved fairly quickly on my 
successive loops and barrel rolls. After what 
seemed to be much too short a time, we were 
on our way back to the airfield where we 
performed a 'run-and-break', flying flat out 
down the runway at 50 feet and then pulling 
round in a high-g turn to come in to land. As 
mine was the last flight of the day, I helped 
Roger push the aircraft back into the hangar, 
so bringing to a close an exciting day's flying. 

I must extend my thanks to Major 
'Wild' Bill Stealey, Colin Bastable, Fiona 
Martin and the rest of the MicroProse team, 
along with Simon Harvey of Headlines PR. for 
making it a most enjoyable day out. I look 
forward to another flight simulator press 
launch with fervour! 


as Gold and Co - 
New Products 

Jason Spiller reports on a 

recent visit to US Gold HQ in 


"With its release expected this month, the 
next product to reach completion is Gaunt- 
let II. I was interested to learn that it was a per- 
sonal project of the authors of the original 
conversion, Kevin Bulmer and Richard Cos- 
tello of Gremlin Graphics. Kevin explained 
that (JS Gold were doubtful about a sequel 
and so he and Richard were working on the 
game in their free time. Gauntlet II is a direct 
scaled-down model of the arcade version, 
complete with original digitized speech. In its 
current state, the speech alone takes 660K of 
memory, while the graphics use 300K. Obvi- 
ously, it is subject to considerable data com- 
pression. Like the arcade version, four play- 
ers can participate in the game at once - a feat 
which is only possible with a joystick interface 
which has been developed by Richard. This 
interface fits in the printer port and has two 
male joystick connections. Available for 
£5.95 it is a must for all Gauntlet fans and 
anyone fortunate enough to own four joys- 

That famous typographical error. Bill 

Alley (otherwise known as Bill Allen), works 
in an adjacent office to Richard and Kevin. 
Currently, he is working on a game which 
stars Mickey Mouse in Disney Towers. Again, 
the powers that be doubted the viability of a 
game with Mickey Mouse in it, which is an 
unusual conclusion to draw about the most 
popular and commercially successful char- 
acter evercreated. Thanks to an arrangement 
with Disney, (JS Gold have carte blanche to 
use any Disney character in their software. 
Mickey Mouse (a title has not yet been agreed 
on) is representative of the current theme in 
Gremlin Graphics software which incorpo- 
rates games within the game. In this case, 
Mickey must combat all manner of spectres, 
spooks and witches and find the pieces to 
Merlin's broken wand. Armed only with a 
water pistol and a mallet, he must enter into 
rooms on each level and complete an ingen- 
ious arcade game. 

Last year, Bill developed an incredible 
graphics and programming device called 
Keating, which has revolutionized their soft- 
ware production. Obviously, the technical 
details are kept under wraps, but its task is 
quite straightforward. Keating enables the 
development staff to create screens on the ST 
and, via a Pinnacle with a massive memory, 
port the screen to a Spectrum, Amstrad or 
any other computer. It then shows the areas 
and details which must be touched up. With 
an inbuilt art package, these modifications 
can then be filled in. Naturally, this has had a 
tremendous effect on their software produc- 

tion, as well as on the quality of the games. 
When asked if Keating would be marketed, 
the technical staff answered in unison: 'Mot 
bloody likely!' 

Officially, Richard and Kevin are 
working on a game called Ramrod, which 
also incorporates the 'games within a game' 
idea. I commented on the similarities between 
the terrains in Ramrod and Dizzy Wizard from 
Diamond Games - they didn't deny it. The 
game is currently in the embryonic stages, 
but the animation that I saw was quite out- 
standing. Ramrod is a character who must be 
kept amused during the search for four ar- 
cade machines within each level. The ma- 
chines must be located and played before you 
can move on to the next level. There are four 
levels and so Ramrod will effectively contain 
sixteen separate games, plus the main game 
itself. Kevin's speciality is the animation at 
the beginning of the game. For instance, for 
Guardian II he created a breathtaking anima- 
tion sequence, which shows the characters 
from the game on the side of an arcade ma- 
chine. The animation then moves up and over 
the machine console and into the screen. 
Unfortunately, this one sequence would take 
many disks: 'Oh for the day when everyone 
has a hard disk drive!' 

One of the main reasons for my visit 
was to report on the progress of the official 

Out Run conversion, which seems to be tak- 
ing an eternity. I perceived that it was further 
away from completion than they would have 
wished, although the remainder of the work 
was described as: 'Getting rid of the rough 
edges'. The scenery on the sides of the road 
is complete and impressive, and there was 
also evidence that the main features and 
hazards from the arcade version would be 


* START *5 



.j.. ' 

incorporated in the conversion. However, I 
was not so keen on the striped track which is 
supposed to enhance the feeling of move- 
ment and speed. In my opinion, the roadside 
objects would perform the task quite ade- 
quately. I think the message has to be, don't 
expect too much of Out Run - the ST is a home 
micro and the arcade game is nearer to being 
a mainframe! 


AMI6A £19.95 


ATARI ST £19.95 

8-10 Paul Street, London EC2A 4JH Telephone 01-377 841 1 - Telefax 01-377 5569 

As everyone should already know, a shoot-'em-up In- 
volves the mindless zapping of intelligent alien lifeforms. 
Combine this with an attractive scrolling effect and you 

have a definite recipe for success. 

The term "scrolling", simply describes the movement of the game's background. This 
can be either of a vertical, or horizontal nature. 

Scrolling shoot-'em-ups have been a part of the games scene for some time 
now. The phenomenal success of the early arcade games, Williams' Defender being 
a timeless reminder, secured the fate of the shoot-'em-up for ever. With the ever-im- 
proving state of computer technology, games have become louder, faster and clearer. 
Many of the arcade favourites started to find their way into our homes via a home 
computer; the invasion was complete, shoot-'em-ups were here to stay. 



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Of course, there are many features that are used again and again. If the recipe 
is good, why bother to change the ingredients? All of the scrolling shoot-'em-ups I 
have come across take the form of the player having to defend his homeland from 
some sort of evil enemy attack. Often this takes place in the nether regions of space, 
but one or two more down-to-earth games are also available. The player is usually 
faced with a real challenge having a definite ending, normally the defeat of his op- 
pressors. The game's action takes place over a specified number of levels, andmost 
scenarios see the intrepid hero having to take on some sort of mothership before 
progressing onto further levels. Most games see the player taking the form of a 
futuristic space craft, armed always with some sort of laser gun. All of the modern 
games have some system by which the player can enhance the capabilities of his 
craft. By destroying set numbers of aliens, or completing certain sections of the game, 
a player can build various features onto his craft. The most common additional extras 

Extra pre power: collecting further weaponry allows a player to destroy more 
aliens, and is often essential in order to complete a level. Shields or force fields: with 
some programs the action sometimes becomes a little hectic so to aid survival, shields 
are often offered and players are advised to accept. Smart bombs: these are also quite 
common. Since their first appearance in Williams' Defender, smart bombs have 
become very popular, allowing the player to escape trouble by simply destroying all 
the enemies on screen. Extra speed: also a common feature, allowing a player to steer 
his craft out of immediate danger, and more often than not, straight into even more 
trouble. These are the most common features, but not all programs will include them. 

A 11 scrolling shoot- 'em-ups need a variety of 'baddies ', and these usually come 
in three forms. The small, moving, enemy craft normally attack in waves; these 
troublesome creatures use laser fire to destroy a player, although they are not averse 
to the odd kamikaze attack. Land-based defence weaponry is also a specialty of 
scrolling games. These guns can be either static or mobile and emit a steady stream 
of gunfire all aimed at your swift demise. A third typeof alien encountered is the level 
'guardian'. This is typically a large creature, strategically placed to stop you from 
completing your mission. Only after a few well-placed zapps can it normally be 

Whatever type of game you normally play, there's nothing quite like a 
mindless shoot-'em-up. The sudden rush of anger and raw energy is quite exhilarat- 
ing. Mind you, just spare a thought for all those involved in theproduction of the latest 
zappers, likeXenon, forinstance. The amount of thought and care needed to program 
a successful shoot- 'em-up must be phenomenal. So take aim, and enjoy a good blast. 

Goldrunner, Microdeal 

The Earth is dying, man has so polluted his environment it can no 
longer sustain him. Mew worlds have been found. But, between the 
old legacy and the new hope, lie - the Ringworlds of Triton. Artificial 
worlds of unknown composition and built by an inconceivable 
technology, the Ringworlds are inhabited by the most hostile race 
in the universe. They will destroy anything within range of their 
awesome weapons. Your task is to penetrate the Ringworld's outer 
defences and destroy the Ring itself by draining its power. Only a 
small, speedy craft could complete such a mission. The Goldrunner 
is such a craft. 

Taking on the part of the Goldrunner, your main objective is 
to destroy all the Ringworld's ground bases. To simply fly up and 
down the alien station zapping emplacements, would become very 
mundane. Therefore, included on the Ringworld's surface are 
numerous tall structures. An error in navigation of the Goldrunner 
soon sees the unfortunate pilot ploughing into one of the strategi- 
cally positioned towers. Also guarding the station is a myriad of 
flying robotic defence units. Contact with these guardians will not 
destroy the Goldrunner, but your shields will reduce should your 
craft come into contact with their disrupter bombs. 

The graphics used within Goldrunner are all well drawn, the 
Goldrunner itself being a rather large shape. It is somewhat difficult 
to judge between what actually are, and are not, targets, so the best 
policy, as the game suggests, is to blast anything in your way. This 
strategy works well until you find one of the annoying tall structures 
that refuses to be destroyed. There are no hidden extras with which 
to enhance your ship. Add this to the fact that, once destroyed, you 
have to restart from the very beginning of the appropriate level, and 
you Will realise that careful navigation is required. 

The sound effects offered by Goldrunner are a little sparse. 
But, when the game's musical score and great speech synthesis are 
heard, it is excusable. I found it a little irritating when the game kept 
on telling me, "Good shooting!", and, "You're doing greatt" - still, 
these are minor worries. Goldrunner is a good all-round shoot-'em- 
up, a little difficult, but worthwhile. 

A large structure looms tall above the Goldrunner scenery 

Another swarm of aliens attacks 

Screaming Wings, Red Rat 

Ah, how refreshing to find a game set on, or rather above, good old 
earthly soil. Red Rat's Screaming Wings sees you take on the role 
of a lonely jet pilot. From what I can gather it looks as if your mission 
is to fly your attack craft behind enemy lines. Quite what you must 
do when you arrive there I never really managed to find out. The 
gameplay saw me taking on a number of jet-fighters, all managing 
to look strikingly similar to my own craft. After having encountered 
these rather mundane attackers I came face to face with what I took 
to be the level 'guardian'. This somewhat larger bomber took great 
delight in spraying me with its tail gun, and hence I never really 
ventured far into the game. 

The game scrolls vertically over various fields and seas, the 
enemy fighters always appearing in the same repetitive formations. 
The game boasts extra features available to the player. Amongst 
those I encountered were time-delayed shields which, although 
rather few in number, were very useful because it was difficult to 

avoid fire from some of the enemy aircraft. The only other feature 
I came across was a drone. This little extra provided the player with 
a mimicking fire pattern and it seemed to move in a pattern 
symmetrical to your craft's movements, firing at the same intervals. 

Overall, the game's graphical representation is poor. The 
scrolling background is not sharp and seems to become much the 
same after a short period of time. As I have already mentioned, the 
enemy aircraft are all very similar, only the grey-coloured ones 
standing out. Their movements seem slow and sluggish - not at all 
like modern fighters. I saw the little white dots, supposedly repre- 
senting the aircraft's huge arsenal, as nothing more than comical. 
The game's sonics are of the same substandard quality. For me, the 
best sound was when a panic-stricken voice announced, "Game 
over man, game over!". 

Red Rat's Screaming Wings is well below the high standard 
players now expect. I would recommend players spend their money 
on something a little more worthwhile. Screaming Wings surely 
must be a nominee for the Golden Turkey award. 

Enemy aircraft attack (yours Is the one at the base of the screen) You attack the large bomber aircraft (Red Rat's equivalent of the 

sentinel ship found in other games) 

Wave after wave of small alien craft cause most of the problems 

Plutos, Microoalue 

Amidst the huge jungle of scrolling shoot-'em-ups, Plutos repre- 
sents nothing exceptionally new. The author, Derek Johnson, has 
obviously taken a hard look at many of the currently available titles, 
gathered together their better qualities and formed his own title. In 
this game, a space fighter, equipped with standard-issue lasers, 
flies over a smoothly vertically-scrolling mothership. The aim is for 
the player, using his space fighter, to destroy brightly coloured 
structures which are positioned on the surface of the mothership. 
These structures represent various electrical and navigational 
nerve centres and, with some practice, it is possible to destroy all 
of them. During all the action your craft's fuel level is constantly 
dropping. Located with the various other units on the mothership, 
are fuel dumps. The destruction of these fuel depots helps maintain 
your ship's energy levels. 

Plutos would be too easy if all the player had to do was shoot 
a few well-positioned emplacements. However, to add to all the 
confusion the programmer has included numerous attack waves of 
vicious swirling aliens. These extra-terrestrial creatures come in 
many different shapes and colours; they are all well drawn and 
detailed and their movements are particularly smooth. The game is 
divided into levels, each are more hazardous than the last. Before 
a player can advance, he is faced with a face! A sign in the middle 
of the visage tells the player what is required of him. The game's 
only unique feature is, perhaps, the two-player option. When 
selected, two players can battle simultaneously for those precious 
points. I found this option very entertaining. 

As I have already mentioned, the game offers nothing 
staggeringly new; the only thing setting it apart from numerous 
other shoot-'em-ups is the two player option. But, since Tynesoft 
have decided to market the game on their budget label, MicroValue, 
the game is of a low-enough price to generate interest. If you enjoy 
a good blast every once in a while, but are not the world's greatest 
games player, then Plutos could be your answer. 

The rotating metal disk aliens are most people's favourite 

Jupiter Probe, Microdeal 

From your home base on the earth, you control the Jupiter Probe. 
Your ship automatically relays photographic images of Jupiter to 
you and using all your skills you must navigate the probe deep into 
the territories of the planet. To aid your cause you have three ships, 
each equipped with twin laser cannon and limited ultrasonics. 
Ultrasonics cause a massive disturbance to occur all around your 
ship. This has the effect of destroying all other enemy fighters, but 
warnings have been issued that some of the enemy mutations have 
been equipped with sonic shields, and therefore are immune to your 
ultrasonic weapons. Your Jupiter Probe has also been fitted with 
shields of its own. When activated, these shields give your craft a 
limited immunity from any enemy fire. Your on-board battle com- 
puter will forecast any oncoming formations, therefore letting you 
know of any forthcoming dangers. 

The game's playfield struck me as being somewhat small, 

the left-hand side of the screen being used for a score and status 
display, leaving the actual playable area a little cramped. The first 
level proved to be all too easy; with only a couple of mutations and 
formations to blast, it all seemed to be over before it had begun. The 
next levels did begin to get harder, the small screen soon becoming 
cluttered. Formations and mutations became a common feature, 
sometimes both at once. The player would find himself overrun with 
aliens and progress would often be slow and tiresome. 

Graphically, the game is of an average standard. However, 
I found that neither the aliens nor the scenery really changed much. 
The sonics are not wonderful although Rob Hubbard's up-tempo 
tune is quite catchy. But had it not been for the game's extra speech, 
I could only have described the effects as, at best, adequate. 

Overall, Jupiter Probe represents nothing of outstanding 
merit. The game lacks many features and becomes dull and 
repetitive after only a few sittings. I'm afraid I would not recommend 
it. . 

There's always plenty of action and the reduced playing area 

often seems cramped 

A fleet of larger, mutant craft attack - they are announced by the 

effective digltsed speach 

The first home computer game that has been able to be described as arcade quality 

Xenon, Melbourne House 

The Xenites were once unheard of then, as if overnight, their bases 
and ships started to appear on fifteen different planets. With them 
the Xenites brought war. Merchant cruisers once again had to travel 
armed. The Xenites randomly attacked the merchant cargos and as 
a result of the chaos no spaceship was safe. Then, completely out 
of character, the Xenites attacked one of the Federation's star fleets. 
Just before being taken captive, the Federation's General Xod 
managed to send a mayday signal. Intercepting the call, you as the 
only available space fighter, are summoned to Xod's aid. 

To effect a rescue you have to negotiate four enemy sectors, 
each sector consisting of four furtherzones. Your craft is of the latest 
design and is able to transmute between a fast jet fighter, and a 
slower, yet highly manoeuvrable, tank-type craft. During your 
mission you will need to use both, so knowing how to control them 
well, is very important. 

Within the enemy territory are numerous laser-spitting 
emplacements. Some of these defences are housed within an 
underground lift system. Once destroyed, these units disappear, 
only to reappear in the shape of even more venomous defence units, 
or in a more useful power cell. Collecting these power cells allows 
a player to enhance his ship with features which include: wing 
lasers, homing missiles, laser fire, armour, extra speed, increased 
shot distance, fuel, side lasers, and rotating balls which mimic your 
fire pattern. It is, therefore, possible to transform your humble ship 

into an awesome fighting craft. The damage caused by a highly 
equipped ship proves to be exhilarating - quite noisy too! 

The game's graphics are superbly drawn, giving that metal- 
lic look so often found in the original arcade game. The aliens are 
all well represented, and very detailed. The emplacements seem to 
pulsate as they emit their deadly laser balls and the beetle-like 
ground defence units scurry about in an anxious attempt to defeat 
the intrepid invader. At the end of each section the Xenites have 
stationed a sentinel and these huge forms seem intent on not letting 
anyone pass them. Only after much dodging about, and many 
direct hits on the enemy, will a sentinel allow you to make progress. 
The game's sonics are also of the highest standard, speech synthe- 
sis being included as General Xod appears and announces, "Sector 
one".Thezappy and kaboom sounds enhance play further and give 
a wonderful feel to the game. 

We at the ST Action office haven't managed to complete 
level two yet and, having played the game for so long, you'd have 
thought we may have become bored with it by now but Xenon has 
been well designed and programmed with the result that the player 
yearns for that "one last go". It is interesting to learn that this game 
has simultaneously been released in the arcades on Mastertronic's 
Arcadia label. I suspect Xenon to be a big hit in the seaside slot halls, 
but, before you deposit those precious silver coins, I suggest you 
buy the ST version first and get in a bit of practice. Although Xenon 
represents nothing staggeringly new, it is well implemented and 
extremely playable. For these reasons alone, Xenon will surely be 
the finest shoot'em-up to-date in your collection. 

Skyrlder - Ihe only horizontally-scrolling game in this superlest... 

...but doesn't it bear a striking resemblance to Goldrunner? 

Skyrider, Creation Software 

'Skyrider' is the code name for a remote control fighter unit 
designed to patrol the earth orbit. Space probes have taken 
photographs of an alien spacecraft orbiting the earth. The extra- 
terrestrial beings, although not hostile, do not understand the fragile 
nature of the earth's atmosphere and their space cruiser has been 
emitting harmful amounts of radiation into it. All attempts to contact 
the alien beings have failed and the only option now open is to 
destroy the ship. The world's finest scientists have been working 
closely together - the result of their knowledge is the Skyrider 
system. The earth's radiation level is rising quickly; soon it will be 
too late. Skyrider is only a prototype; it is a long shot but it will work? 
It must! 

The screen soon becomes very busy as several alien fighters 
join your own craft. If you remember, your mission is to clear all the 
deck targets. With this in mind and the alien fighters trying to sap 
your concentration, it is very easy not to notice the towers or force 
fields and end up slamming the precious remote into either of these 

obstacles. The control of the ship can be quite tricky, especially 
when a number of towers have to be negotiated. If you should wish 
to double back on a target, a swift tug of the joystick in the desired 
direction will flip the craft and start it on its new course. 

The sound effects are all there too! I found myself turning 
down the sound and running for that soothing 'plink-plink fizz' 
remedy. The sound gets a little overworked, resulting in the poor 
player being mesmerized. The graphics of the game are rather 
intricate and your remote is somewhat dwarfed by the huge starship 
- some of the emplacements are larger than you! The colours are 
used to good effectalthough, with all the action going on, I found my 
eyes losing sight of the remote. The tone of the graphics are, 
perhaps, a little dark. Still, if your concentration level is high you 
should pull through. 

To sum up Skyrider after only one sitting would probably not 
be fair. The game is one of those which you would play for an hour 
or so and later, when searching your software collection, find and 
play with renewed excitement. A good first release from Creation 
Software; may their next be even better. 

Slap Fight, Imagine 

'Manoeuvre your Slapfighter over the vertically-scrolling landscape 
of the planet Orac. As you progress further into the game the 
landscape becomes more and more hostile and enemy life forms 
group together to attack you in lethal waves. When you destroy 
certain aliens they sometimes yield a star - pick up the star (by flying 
over it) and this will highlight the icon at the bottom of the screen. 
To select the icon, press the space bar and this will award you with 
the indicated capability...' 

Well, have you heard something similar to that before? I 
certainly have, and Slap Fight represents nothing new for me. The 
game is a direct copy of Taito's original arcade classic; I never came 
across the game in the arcades, and if it was anything like this con- 
version I can quite understand why. Now before I go completely off 
the rails and run down Slap Fight too much, I must say that it isn't 
really that bad. There is much worse around - take Screaming 
Wings, for instance. But with all the talk of the game being a good 
arcade conversion, I fail to see what all the fuss is about. 1 have 
encountered far better games from far more humble backgrounds. 

As the inlay says, the player must destroy alien craft and 
collect a number of stars. This process will allow a player to equip 
the Slapfighter with a collection of extra features. It is suggested that 
the ship's speed be enhanced first in order to make manoeuvres 
more swift. A player would be wise to learn the exact whereabouts 
of the enemy emplacements, as their aim is extremely good and 
they don't think twice about blasting attacking craft out of the sky. 

The game's graphics are your everyday run-of-the-mill 
type, quite well drawn and, as I understand, an exact copy of the 
arcade game. I was impressed with the smoothness of the scrolling, 
it was certainly of a better quality than many of the others I have 
seen. The sound, too, is good, and I was particularly impressed with 
the soundtrack. Why then should a game with so many good points 
in its favour be so lacklustre. I found the game slow and tiresome, 
and being returned to the start of the program every time I was hit, 
began to take its toll, and I soon began to became a little weary. 

Overall, the game is not as bad as it might seem. Although 
the idea is somewhat dated, Slap Fight will, no doubt, find it's way 
into many collections. My advice is to play it first. 




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Despite some ground-based objects having shadows, your 
Slapfighter cannotcolllde with any of them 

Enemy tanks often trundle along a system of maze-like roads 


Trauma is one of the more graphically-pleasing games tested and the scenery Is certainly varied 

Trauma, ERE Informatique 

As with many of the other vertically-scrolling shoot-'em-ups, Ere 
Informatique's Trauma sticks to a tried and tested storyline. This 
time the existence of the earth is threatened by a gang of warring 
space barbarians. These barbarians gain their powers from the 
force fields created by four energy globes. The globes are hidden at 
the end of separate territories, and each globe is housed within a 
huge hypership. All you have to do is infiltrate each territory, avoid 
the enemy defences and, finally, destroy the hypership, thus 
retrieving the globe. 

To aid your cause you have been assigned a "deluxe" space 
fighter. However, be warned: you are only given one life in this 
game. Each time your craft is hit, its power reduces until, finally, you 
become nothing more than space debris. On the bonus side, power 
capsules sometimes drift across the screen. Collecting the capsules 
boosts your ship's power, and often gives you extra firepower. 

The enemy come in three separate forms. The first, an 
airborne attack, consists of numerous pulsating rectangular 

lifeforms. These aliens are only deadly when contact is made and 
the best strategy is to destroy those in your direct path - otherwise 
leave them well alone. The second defence unit takes the shape of 
a laser emplacement. These cannons are highly accurate and 
should be destroyed at the earliest opportunity. The final lifeform 
encountered is a swirling barrage of aliens. These aliens viciously 
spit laser bolts and are the main cause of many a pilot's demise. The 
only other enemies encountered are the hyperships. These huge 
metallic giants require several direct hits, but are not too difficult to 

Overall, Trauma is a well-thought-out game. It is very easy 
to play and its difficulty level rises as the player progresses. The 
graphics are well drawn and are also very colourful. The game's 
sonics are of a good standard and the introductory music and 
speech are very well implemented. I really enjoyed this game, 
mainly due to the thought given to detail by the programmer - it is 
really simple to get into, and 1 would recommend it to anyone who 
is not the world's greatest zapper. 

A perfect conversion of a very unspectacular arcade game 

Despite its spacey theme, most of the landscape Is very 
reminiscent of Planet Earth 

Xeoious, US Gold 

As to the exact storyline behind (JS Gold's Xevious, I am a little 
unsure. You are put in the pilot seat of a space fighter and your task 
is to fly across changing terrain, locate the mothership, and let her 
have it. Hmmm, it all sounds somewhat dated, and believe me, it is. 

Your armour-clad space ship has but just one defence 
system - the old faithful laser cannon. The action takes place over 
a number of different terrains, the first being some type of forest; 
how nice to see some greenery in space. Later, should you survive 
that long, beaches and long stretches of water are encountered until 
eventually you manage to reach the Xevious nerve centre. The only 
enemy resistance comes in the form of what Jason Spiller once 
described as flying com plasters; such wry humour. These flying 
doughnuts come in two forms; both yield their fair share of fire but 
the ones encountered on later sections are nigh on indestructible, 
so dodging becomes the name of the game. Aiding and abetting 
their airborne counterparts are many ground bases, some circular, 
some square. These sit quite calmly, spitting the occasional laser 
produce. As with most games of this genre, if it's there, blast it. 
Xevious's action becomes very repetitive: there are no extras to 
collect; no new, more deadly alien forms, and no excitement. 

The sonics are almost as dull as the game, the usual tinkley 
soundtrack being repeated monotonously in the background. The 
spot effects are of a poor standard - the customary kaboom sounds 
are all I noticed. The game's graphics are exactly the same as in the 
arcade version; obviously little memory was spare after storing all 
the characters - they must repeat themselves every two minutes! I 
must remind potential buyers with money to burn, that the game will 
not run on machines with upgraded chips. Please, therefore, check 
with your local dealer as to your machine's compatibility. 

Xevious is living proof that the original arcade conversions 
are not always wonderful. I could best describe Xevious as dull and 
bland; the action is repetitive and the gameplay slow, if you want a 
first rate example of a much-dated shoot- 'em-up, Xevious is for 
you. Don't forget the generous offer of the free poster and badge, it 
makes the game almost worthwhile! 


Hades Nebula, Nexus 

Before I go any further, I must point out that due to the bankruptcy 
of Nexus Software, Hades Nebula might be somewhat difficult to 
find in your local software shop. The game's storyline again treads 
an already well-worn path. Apparently the world's energy supplies 
are near exhaustion point, therefore the WEC (World Energy 
Committee) have formulated a plan to get round the impending 
problem. The plan involves ten gigantic colony ships and, using a 
Meason Accelerator, the WEC plan to send the ships to the farthest 
reaches of the galaxy where they hope to find precious energy in 
abundance. The idea seems plausible, but the evil Emperor Hades 
has different thoughts. From his fortress, hidden on the planet of 
Sodini, the Emperor dispatches his entire battle fleet to intercept the 
Earth's ships, enslave their crews, and sell the ships for scrap. Only 
Colony 7, due to computer error, escapes the fiendish plot. Arriving 
ahead of time, the luckless colony stumbles upon the old system of 
Orion Nebula, only to find that it has been made into a mining 
settlement, and renamed by the Emperor himself. The crew of 
Colony 7, and you in particular, have the unenviable task of 
destroying the Hades Nebula, thus rendering the Empire powerless 
and freeing the way for the Earth's fleet. 

According to the game's inlay card the objective is to obtain 
a high score - pretty obvious really! The game starts with your ship 
hovering above the planet's desert-like surface. Scattered on the 
planet are numerous strangely shaped buildings, various surface 

defence units and the odd fuel and laser replenishment pod. The 
"blast everything" method is recommended and level one, once the 
safe route has been discovered, poses little threat. The second level 
takes place in the depths of space, whilst the Emperor Hades is 
finally encountered in level three. Destroy the Emperor and his 
battleship, and the earth will be saved, fail and .... 

I must confess that Hades Nebula had me stumped; barely 
managing to complete the first stage I began to loathe the game. It 
was not until Hugh showed me the error of my ways that I started to 
see the beauty of the game. The graphics are extremely well drawn, 
not that you have much time to study them. The secret of the game 
is to collect the numerous extra features; these include; speed 
(twice), shields (twice), lasers, side-weapons and diagonal fire. The 
soundtrack plays continuously as the game is being played and by 
pressing a single key the contestant can introduce sound effects - 
good ones at that! 

Hades Nebula is a good game. It does, however, have two 
main faults. For reasons unknown to me, the game sees fit to crash 
after the player reaches the third level. Anyone managing to reach 
subsequent levels must consider themselves lucky. The second 
fault has been diagnosed by myself and it is not really a technical 
slip-up. I feel that the game is much too difficult in its early stages 
- players have little chance to progress and I fear many players will 
eventually give up. If only the programmers had thought out the 
gameplay a little more carefully. But overall, Hades Nebula is a fine 
game featuring some outstanding graphics and sonics. If the crash 
problem had been rectified, it would have been a sure-fire winner. 




Hades Nebula 


Jupitor Probe 




Screaming Wings 




Slap Fight 










Addict ivness Overall 








Hades Nebula 

Jupitor Probe 


Screaming Wings 


Slap Fight 








Red Rat 





US Gold 








Easy- Average 





0726 68020 
0726 68020 
091 414 4611 
061 832 6633 
01 364 0123 
01 377 8411 
021 356 3388 



The Apache . . . Fierce and elusive, like its warrior namesake 
. . . Capable of defeating enemy tanks, infantry, and hostile 
aircraft on the modern electronic battlefield. 
Gunship's revolutionary 3-D graphics enable you, the pilot, 
to fly into the world's hottest trouble spots . . .You'll use an 
unbelievable array of high tech information and weapon 
systems, including lasers, video cameras, night viewers, 
radar warnings, jammers, computers, missiles, rockets, 
flares and a 30mm cannon! Successful missions will be 
rewarded with medals and rank promotions. 

Now available on ST and IBM 




Please send 

copy/ies of Gunship CBM 64/128 D Cassette £14.95 □ Disk £19.95. 

Spectrum □ Cassette £9.95 □ Disk £12.95 □ Further details. 
Name (block capitals) 



I enclose £ 

or debit my Access/Visa card. Expiry date 

including 55p P+P. Cheques payable to MicroProse Software Ltd. 

MicroProse Ltd., 2 Market Place, Tetbury, Gloucestershire GL8 8DA. UK. Tel: (0666) 54326. Tlx: 43422 MPS/UKG. 



with Jeff Minter 

Written by David Stewart 



Llamasoft have been one of the most well-known producers of 
entertainment software throughout the 8-bit era, mainly for 
Commodore's Vic-20 and the infamous '64. Llamasoft was, and is, 
one man, Jeff Minter. 

While the booming video-game industry was being tamed 
by the big corporations and the pin-striped hype-makers, Llama- 
soft, founded in 1982, continued to produce the most weird and 
wonderful games, totally original and fashioned by the unique 
imagination of Jeff Minter. Mo one else was creating what most 
people considered to be 'pretty whacky stuff. These games were 
almost cult, and each one was stamped with an instantly recognis- 
able mark of Minterism. 

Jeff has chosen the ST as the machine he prefers to work 
with. His first product, the Colourspace light synthesiser, was a big 
hit. Trip-a-Tron (Colourspace 2) will materialise shortly, and it's 

Matrix (above) & Hover Bover (below) 

How it all started 

Going back to the early days, Jeff's first computer was, yes, you've 
guessed: "...a Sinclair ZX80, and my second computer, believe it or 
not, was a ZX81 expanded to 16K!" 

The first Llamasoft game was Defenda for the VIC-20, Jeff 
recalls, "This was a shameless rip-off of the arcade game Defender. 
At that stage I hadn 't got into any original stuff, although my next 
game was Trax which was moving away from the arcade look- 
alikes. Gridrunner 
followed. This was 
an arcade theme 
which had certain 
elements stripped 
out with some of my 
own ideas added, 
and it did really 
well." The Commo- 
dore 64 was 
recognised for 
having the best 
sound chip of all, but 
Jeff, who produces 
all of the sound 
effects in his own 
games, gives the 
VIC-20 some credit. 
"Once you got to 
know the sound 
chip in the VIC, you 
could make some 
really odd noises 
with it. The zapping 
effects were great - it 
was capable of producing some really hard-edged, Williams-type 
arcade sound effects. " 

The original titles, such as, Gridrunner, Laser Zone and 
Matrix were pioneering blast-everything games. Hover Bovver took 
a very down-to-earth subject, mowing the lawn, and turned it into a 
crazy but successful video game. The most unusual Llamasoft 
games were yet to follow: Attack of the Mutant Camels, Revenge of 
the Mutant Camels, then Mama Llama, Ancipital and many more. 
Most of these titles had a distinctive animal theme featuring mainly 
llamas, goats, sheep and camels; if there is life after death, Jeff 
Minter will probably become one of these. 

The Video-Game Market 

Llamasoft has not released a video game for some time now; Jeff 
puts this down to changing attitudes: "I've been thoroughly naffed 
off with the games field. All we've had recently is the big compa- 
nies pumping out trashy licensed games. " Minter's dislike of 
commercially-processed video games is quite clear and his 
arguments are sound: '7 don't have to buy ideas from anyone else. 
I'm a designer as welt as a programmer. I prefer to work on ideas 
which appeal to me. It's important to put some of your own 
personality into your games. The guys who produce the licensed 
games have to do little in the way of imaginative thinking. They 
have to satisfy the licence owner and, therefore, have no chance to 
express themselves. One of the sad things about the computer 
industry at the moment is that programmers don 't try to make a 
name for themselves. If you load up one of my games and see a big 
Camel or whatever, 
you know immediately 
who has created it - I've 
always tried to put a 
bit of myself into my 
games. My work may 
not be as polished as 
some of the more 
commercial stuff, but 
they do have a unique 
and individual style. " 

Minter feels that 
it is important to give 
software an identity 
which has been created 
by the programmer. 
"When you load up a 
video game these days, 
you can't tell who has 
written it or whether or 
not it is going to be any 
good. Most of this kind 
of stuff is as good as 
written by a commit- 
tee." He has also identi- 
fied similarities 
between the video 
game and record in- 
dustries. "In the games scene these days the software companies, 
who are the equivalent of the record labels, are pushed and 
marketed with relentless image-moulding hype; the situation is 
pretty crazy, after all, you wouldn't buy a Pink Floyd record just 
because It was released on EMI - I'm just trying to be Pink Floyd 
and not EMI!" 

Vertical scrolling shoot'em-ups are popping up like weeds 
at the moment and Jeff finds most of them lacking in originality. 
"We've got vertical scrolling shoot'em-ups coming out of our ears 
now. Take Xenon for example, a beautiful piece of work, but why 
doesn 't the programmer responsible apply his obviously substan- 
tial talents to creating something different and more original. It 
makes little sense for so many vertically scrolling games to appear 
on the ST- it's not very hot on scrolling because there's no special 
hardware facility. This leaves plenty of scope to use effects which 
do not involve scrolling." 

Llamasoft expect to cut through the hype when their first 
video game appears for the ST, Jeff explains: "There is a big 


games project in the pipeline. I stiit like my blasting themes, so this 
should be a pretty unique and exciting game for the ST. " There is 
no doubt that this game will be jam-packed full of Minterisms - 
something to look forward to at the end of the year. 

The Man Himself 

You couldn't chat to a unique character like Jeff Minter without 
finding out a bit more about hims and the way he works. 

Jeff develops 
his ST software 
using a Mega ST4 
with a 20Mb SH204 
hard disk which he 
admits is full up and 
needs replacing with 
something bigger. 
Most of the pro- 
gramming is done in 
assembler using 
HiSoft's Devpac 
which he describes as: "The most convenient and comfortable 
assembler to use. Having the assembler and editor combined is the 
ideal situation." Even with the Trip-a-Tron source code topping 
20,000 lines long, Jeff has not been tempted to use the Tempus 
text editor. "I don 't like to prat around moving between different 
programs for editing and 
assembling. " 

When asked what he 
would change about the ST if he 
had been involved in designing it, 
Jeff had no hesitation: 7 would 
like an enhanced graphics mode 
with more colours, hardware- 
assisted scrolling and, Jeez., a 
decent sound chip for crying out 
loud! What a big oversight it was 
to make a machine as nice as the 
ST and to give it a poxy AY 
sound chip. " Sounds like Jeff 
ought to be hacking away with an 
Amiga. Would this not be an 
ideal outlet for his creative 
talents? "Unfortunately, the 
Amiga is not a very approachable 
machine. I've not yet found a working environment I feet comfort- 
able with on that machine. Because the ST is a bit simpler, I get on 
well with it and I know my way around - it's like 'Home' to me 
now. With the Amiga you have so many things trying to grab hold 
of the operating system, and so many custom chips trying to 
interrupt you, it gets a bit overwhelming. The Amiga is an interest- 
ing machine, although I would prefer something a bit more clean 
and open like the ST, but with just a couple of chips to assist with 
graphical work. There's an overkill of hardware assistance on the 
Amiga; it can get to the stage where people are using the hardware 
too much and they're not actually doing anything clever or 

We have a firm ST fanatic here, so what other software 
does he use with the machine? At this point Jeff produces a copy 
(sorry, original) of Star Wars, and says with a wry grin on his face: 
7 use this one quite a bit!". Anything else? "I use NEOchrome for 
most of my graphical work. It may not be the most sophisticated 

paint program, but I feet comfortable with it. I've got a big thing 
about software being 'comfortable'. HEO has got the best user 
interface; I like having the magnified hot spot in view all the time. " 

Programming is thirsty 
work, so what's Jeffs favourite 
drink? "Inka Kola! You can only 
get it in Peru; it's yellow (this is 
nothing to do with llamas), and it 
tastes great. " If he wasn't 
programming computers, what 
would he be doing now? "Errrm, I 
might be writing science fiction, 
or even herding llamas in Peru! I 
think I'd have to be doing some- 
thing creative realty. " What is this 
fascination with llamas? 7 was 
heavily into camels when I was 
young. Goats, sheep, llamas... I 
just love animals. " Do you own a 
llama? "Not yet." 

Back up to the northern 
hemisphere again. Is there any- 
thing this man of many opinions particularly dislikes? "Yeh, the 
way the computer-game industry thinks and works at the moment; 
where these big companies try and make a lot of money without 
really promoting the individual artist. I don 't tike the attitude of a 
lot of the programmers who are willing to sit there and do conver- 
sions but not gel up and write anything creative. The computer is 
the most amazing creative tool, and most of these people are using 
it in a non-creative manner. The big companies never try anything 
adventurous. Unless they 're sure they 're going to make lots of 
money, an innovative game will not be created or released - people 
are reluctant to experiment. " 


The ST version of 
Colourspace was quite 
a unique piece of 
software, a develop- 
ment of the 8-bit 
Psychedelia but 
certainly the most 
radical interpretation of 
the light synth theme. 

For those of you 
who are not yet familiar 
with this new breed of 
entertainment software, 
here's a brief explana- 
tion of what it's all 
about. The light syn- 
thesiser is played in a 
similar way to a 
musical synth, but light 
is produced instead of 
sound. The light 
appears in the form of 
multi-coloured traces 
of pixels which flow 
around the screen under mouse control. Many different effects can 
be applied to these traces, giving a large number of ways in which 



to create Colourspace 'pieces' or performances. The best way to 
enjoy Colourspace is to perform to a favourite piece of music - 
Colourspace, therefore, allows you to visually interpret the music, 
blending sound and vision to give a complete sensation of audio- 
visual enjoyment. It may sound odd, but this can be an incredibly 
soothing, satisfying or exhilarating experience, particularly if you 
enjoy music and really 'get into it'. 

The Psychedelia/Colourspace phenomenon came about 
before home micros existed, Jeff recalls: "I first got the idea for this 
sort of thing when I was about fourteen. I put it down to the fact 
that I used to listen to a tot of Pink Floyd. The first album I ever 
realty got into was Dark Side of the Moon (notoriously inspira* 
tional); this had a big impact. I used to sit in school and have 
daydreams about being in a rock band. I had never seen a com- 
puter before, but there used to be visions of me doing things with 
large screens and coloured lights; what I wanted was a light 
synthesiser. " 

"Such a device never came on to the market, but after a few 
years in the videogame field I realised that I could use these 
computers to create my own light synth. This is how Psychedelia 
and Colourspace came into 
being. " 

Colourspace is reputed 
to be Jeffs first attempt at 
68000 machine code, he 
admits, "Yeh, this was my first 
bash at 68000 and Trip-a-Tron 
is my second. I'm only an 
average programmer really. " 
How was Colourspace received 
by the buying public and did 
they understand what it was all 
about? "Considering how 
many ST's there were in the 
UK, it did very well indeed. At 
the 1987 PCW show I even had 
people begging for very early 
prototypes of Trip-a-Tron. 
Anyone can use a tight synth; 
I've had 5 or 6-year-old kids 
playing Trip-a-Tron, they love it 
and just can 't put it down 
because everything they do 
looks amazing. It's like a magic 
electronic colouring book to 

Jeff has delivered some 
great Colourspace performances at various computer shows. 
Marillion's Chelsea Monday and Dire Straits' Brothers in Arms have 
worked particularly well. So, does the most experienced Col- 
ourspace performer have any favourite music for Colourspacing? 
"Pink Floyd's pretty good for Colourspace, or anything else for that 
matter. I would also recommend Tangerine Dream for beginners, 
it's progressive, floaty music which is ideal for learning. " 

The ST's mouse makes an excellent Colourspace control- 
ler, but Jeff has given some thought to hooking up other input 
devices to the program. "/ would like to build some custom devices 
for Colourspace; I've got quite a few ideas, but one of the most 
interesting must be the guitar-type controller. It has touch-sensitive 
and graphic tablet-like areas instead of strings. This device would 
be played in a familiar way, only it will govern light instead of 
sound. " 

The Colourspace project is a major Minter occupation at the 
moment. "The Trip-a-Tron idea will never be totally finished, I'll be 
adding new bits and enhancing it for a long time to come. " Jeff 
believes strongly in what he is doing. "I think it's a good 
thing. I can see in about ten years time, light synthesisers 
being used commonly. People are getting more interested in 
visual experiences just look at the rising popularity of 
music videos. People like something visual to go with what 
they are listening to, but most of the current music videos are 
quite meaningless. Colourspace is 'close' to the music, it lets 
you visually interpret the music and this makes a more valid 
audio-visual experience. " 

Trip-a-Tron (Colourspace 2) 

If you're already a Colourspace addict, then Trip-a-Tron 
(Colourspace 2) will absolutely blow your mind. In addition 
to the usual Colourspace features, it has some awesome 
new modes which are capable of generating truly stunning 

For a detailed review of this fantastic program, you'll 
have to wait until, hopefully, next month's issue of ST 
Action. But until then, here's a sneak preview of what 
Minter's latest masterpiece has to offer. 

One of the most distinctive improvements is the 
addition of a 
control panel. 
Jeff admits: 

"The user interface 
in Colourspace I is 
cr..." Many of the 
Trip-a-Tron func- 
tions are accessible 
via the retracting 
control panel, and 
an excellent file 

selector has been programmed to replace the ridiculous keyboard 
sequences of 'Space 1. 

There are more symmetry modes, including one which 
allows the lightstream to be mapped on to an invisible template of 
any shape. There's a resize option which takes the lightstreams 
and scales them down to fit into multiple miniature Colourspace 
screens within the main screen. A waveform editor allows a 
secondary lightstream cursor to follow the path of a set wave 


pattern, working as a kind of slave background lightstream. By 
adjusting the amplitude and modulation of the waveform, it is 
possible to generate a mass of different effects. 

The starting point of the basic Colourspace effect is the 
lightstream cursor (lightform). This can be modified with a pattern 
editor which has been vastly improved in Trip-a-Tron. It is even 
possible to manipulate the lightform in real-time, rotating it during 
a performance. The potential for this is mind-boggling. 







< lb> DO ROT*) 


■>PIX sx 

*»4**7»9 FINXTO 

Every aspect of Colourspace 1 has been radically im- 
proved. There is even a starfleld editor which allows you to control 
almost every conceivable factor which determines how a starfield 
is generated. 

Programming Trip-a-Tron 

For the more adventurous Colourspacemen, there is a program- 
ming language built in to Trip-a-Tron. It's called KML (Key Macro 
Language, but if you say 'KML' quickly you might notice the word 
'camel' creeping in!) and it's a cross between assembler and 
something else - possibly basic. It's quite simple to use and has all 
of the essential looping and conditional functions of a program- 
ming language. 

KML is designed as a dedicated Colourspace control 
language. It gives you access to all of the variables and modes 
which are involved in Colourspacing, but most fascinating of all, 
it's a parallel language. It is possible to run up to 8 KML programs 
at the same time while operating Colourspace too. It even offers 
the facility to communicate with other STs or musical devices 
using the Midi ports. 

Image manipulation 

Impressed so far? Well, we're only just starting to get into the 

system. Trip-a-Tron is a 


program; as well as the 

advanced Colourspace 

features, there's an 

image manipulator and 

video sequencer built in. 


In essence, this 
facility allows you to take 

range of different ways in order to produce full-frame animations, 
many of which are similar to effects you might see on television. It 
is possible to take a colour image and make it rotate around two 
axes, spinning off into the distance. This feature does take up a lot 
of memory - you'll need at least a megabyte to generate a half- 
decent animated sequence. The image cruncher could be used just 
to process single frames for Colourspace backdrops, or just for 
other non-Trip-a-Tron uses. 

Is there no end to what this program can do? Just before 1 
tie up this Trip-a-preview, I must mention the built-in 8-track 
recorder. It allows Colourspace 'events' to be synchronised with 
rhythms for automatic triggering during a performance. 

The possibili- 
ties for this program 
are endless. Jeff is 
currently working on 
a video sequence 
which is being 
generated especially 
to go with some 
synth/rock music 
which has been 
written. He hopes to 
use up to 5 Mega STs 

each with a 192 megabyte hard drive, communicating over a Midi 
link. The end result will feature some pretty way-out Trip-a-Tron 
effects, and judging by the sample I saw, it should be a fantastic 


audio-visual extravaganza. A demo video of this, complete with 
music, will be available soon* 

The End 

It sounds really sophisticated - and it is. You can use as much of 
this power as you like, 
but if you just want to 
dive in and play Col- 
ourspace, then you'll 
find it much easier and 
more approachable than 
the old version. 

Trip-a-Tron is a 
truly amazing piece of 
software. If you like Col- 
ourspace I, you'll abso- 

Colour pictures, painted or digitized, and process them in a wide lutely freak out over this - it's incredible. 



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Hello, and welcome to ST Action's amazing tips section. I hope you are enjoying the mag and agree that it makes a 
change from all the other 'general' ST magazines which are available at the moment. You can contribute to this part of the 
magazine, with your tips, maps and pokes, and win some software of your choice for your troubles - but more of that later. 

Off we go... Compiled by Steve Merrett 

Defender of the Crown - Mirrorsoft 

Here are a few tips for this graphically impressive strategy game: 

•Geoffrey Longsword is the best character as his swordplay is second to none and this is an important factor in the game. 

•I personally only buy soldiers for my campaign army but knights are a lot better for attacking. 

•Always keep a small army at your home castle, because if you lose your castle then you lose the game. 

•Raiding castles is especially handy at the start of a game, for it is a useful way to build up capital for soldiers. 

•When capturing other people's home castles, try to capture those close to home then the land you win will be in close proximity. 

•Always return home to replenish your army between each turn. 

•Never attack land that has just changed hands, as the enemy's campaign army will still be there. When you are attacked, wait to 

see how many men there are before deciding on your actions; don't hesitate to run if you start losing. 

•Always rescue the lady, if only to see the tasteful love scene! 

•Never attack a castle unless you are sure you have superior manpower, then choose 'fierce attack*. 

•Spies are expensive but are generally worth the money, especially before attacking a castle. 

Impact - Audiogenic 

Anyone having problems with this impressive 'Arkanoid' 
clone will be very grateful to a certain Mr. Jonathan Cap- 
ener, of Newcastle Under Lyme, who has kindly sent in the 
codes to the first 71 screens. 

Level 1 1 
Level 31 
Level 51 
Level 7 1 

- 'GOLD' 

- 'WALL' 

- 'HEAD' 

- 'ROAD" 

Level 21 -'FISH* 
Level 41 - 'PLUS' 
Level 61 -'FORK' 
and, of course. 'USER' 

Hades nebula - Nexus 

This cheat is getting a bit long in the tooth now, so if I print 
it, hopefully I will never see it again! 

Just enter MONITOR, (including the fullstop) on 
the high score table. 


Please send any tips, pokes and maps you may have, to 
me at this address below and I will print the best and £20 
worth of games software will go to any tips that are worthy 
of such a splendiferous prize! So get hacking and mapping 
and 1 will see you next month. 

Steve Merrett, Playing Tips (STA) , 10 Theatre Lane, 
Chichester, West Sussex, PO!9 1SR 

Barbarian - Psy gnosis 

For immortality simply press, on the main number keys, 
then 4 followed by the left-hand minus sign then 0, then 
8 and once again the minus sign. Then press 5 then 9 
and, voila! Nothing can harm you. 

Arkanoid - Imagine 

Another poke that keeps rearing its familiar head! Whilst 
the game is booting, press Caps Lock and type DEATH- 
STAR. Then when the game is running, press 'S' to go 
through the screens to see which one you wish to start on. 



& 4 OS 

l'iV*'2Ili • l t .»-'- , 7>7*l 

^MT# vlv^ J d fa 




Wizball - Ocean 

In this multi-colour paint'em-up, the various nasties when shot, release a coloured droplet. These droplets have different 
properties to either help or hinder: 

White droplet - Extra life. 

Black droplet - Screen goes dark until colour completed or until you lose a life. 

Purple droplet - Make your catelite go beserk and eventually kills it. 

Grey droplet - Temporary immunity for your catelite. 

Blue droplet - Causes a 'Filth raid' in which blue space ships appear and fly at you intent on your demise. 

I personally have found the best order in which to complete the levels is as follows: First complete the first three levels 
in reverse, this will transport you onto level four. Go straight to level six and, once again, work backwards; you will now 
be transported to level seven. Complete this and, in turn, level eight, to complete the game and witness the anti-climatic 



Thanks very much to MARK LAWRENCE from Basil- 
don, Essex for the following pokes. The routines were 
written to run in Atari Basic, the Basic supplied with 
the machine. However, Atari have now started includ- 
ing a new Basic which isn't entirely compatible with 
the old version. 

The main difference as far as these routines are 
concerned, is that the DEF SEG statement is not 
supported, which means that if you have the new 
version of Basic, you should leave out the line with this 
statement in it (line 80 in all routines, where it is used). 

To determine if you have the new Basic or not, load 
it by double clicking on the Basic. prg file, then enter 

the desk menu and click on About ST Basic. If you 
have the latest version it will give a 1987 copyright 
message, whereas the old version gave a 1 985 copy- 
right message. 

To use each of the routines provided, follow the 
instructions included in the REM statements. One 
final point, the Backlash and Black Lamp routines 
didn't work immediately after I had typed them in. I 
had to reset the machine, load the Basic, load the 
routine and run it again. If you have any trouble with 
the routines not working first time switch the machine 
off and try again. 



10 rem ************************************************* 

20 rem Infinite lives for Predator on the Atari St. Type in this program and save to disk. To use, 

40 rem insert predator disk 1 and RUN this program predator should load as usual with infinite lives 

60 rem *************************************************** 

100 bload "a:helil.dat",Sh64aOO 

110 poke Sh6904e,Sh4a79:poke Sh698ce, Sh4a79:poke Sh6ba76, Sh4a79 

120 poke Sh6e094,6h4a79: cheat = Sh64a00:call cheat 

10 rem This routine gives infinite energy and infinite time in ritual combat for RANARAMA on the Atari St. 

30 rem Enter this program, insert Ranarama disk and run. To play game with cheats double click on RLOAD.PRG 

50 rem ** NOTE ** Must boot from another disk or normal version will be loaded and run. 

70 rem ************************************************** 

80 def seg=0 

90 for n=Sh7fd00 to Sh7fd75 step 2 

100 read a: poke n,a 

110 next n 

120 bsave "rload.prg",Sh7fd00, 127 

130 data Sh601a, ShOOOO, Sh0058, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO 

140 data ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, &h0000, Shf f f f , Sh2a6f , Sh0004 

150 data Sh2e4d, Sh206d, shOOOc, Sh41e8, Sh0200, Shdfc8, Sh2f 08, Sh2f Od 

160 data Sh2f 3c, Sh004a, ShOOOO, Sh4e4 1, Sh487a, Sh0039, Sh487a, Sh003S 

170 data Sh487a, Sh0020,Sh2f3c, Sh004b, Sh0003, Sh4e41,Sh2040,Sh317c 

180 data shf f f8, Sh07e8, Sh4228, Sh59df , Sh317c, Sh0002, ShOlac, Sh4ee8 

190 data ShOlOO, Sh6175, Sh746f , Sh5c72, Sh616e, Sh6172, Sh616d, Sh612e 

200 data Sh7072,Sh6700, ShOOOO 


rem ****************************************************** 


rem Infinite lives for Backlash on the Atari St. Type in and save this program, then insert 


rem Backlash disk and RUN. Program should load and run as usual but with infinite lives. 


rem ****************************************************** 


def seg=0 


for n=&h6a000 to Sh6a045 step 2 


read a: poke n,a 


next n 




call cheat 


data &h2f 3c, &h0007, shBOOO, &h3f 3c, &h0020, Sh4e4 1, Sh4df 9, fih0003 


data ShOOOO, Sh42a7, Sh3f 3c, ShOOOl, Sh2f 0e, Sh2f 3c, Sh0004 , Sh0002 


data Sh4e4d, Sh41fa, Sh0008, Sh2d48, Sh0084, Sh4ed6, Sh41fa, ShOOOe 


data Sh43f 9, Sh0002, Sh7dae, Sh2288, Sh4ee9, Sh016c, Sh4239, ShOOOO 


data Sha3e3,Sh4ef8,Sh7000 

10 rem ****************************************************** 

20 rem Infinite Energy for Black Lamp on the Atari St. Type in and save this program, then insert Black 

40 rem Lamp disk and RUN. Program should load and run as usual but with infinite Energy. 

60 rem ****************************************************** 

80 def seg=0 

90 for n-Sh6a000 to Sh6a065 step 2 

100 read a:poke n,a 

110 next n 

120 cheat=Sh6a000 

130 call cheat 

200 data Sh42a7, Sh7e20, Sh3f07, Sh4e41, Sh4278, Sh8260, Sh7001, Sh3f 00 

210 data Sh42a7, Sh3f 00, Sh4267, Sh42a7, Sh4df 9, Sh0003, ShOOOO, Sh2f0e 

220 data Sh3f 3c, Sh0008, Sh4e4e, Sh3d7c, Sh6058, Sh0156, Sh41fa, ShOOlO 

230 data Sh43f 9, Sh0003, ShOlbO, Sh32d8, Sh51cf , Shf f fc, Sh4ed6, Sh7000 

240 data Sh31c0, Sh08d4, 6h21c0, Sh08dc, Sh31c0, Sh5944 , Sh21c0, Sh594c 

250 data Sh203c, Sh4e71, Sh4e71, Sh21c0, Sh6d8c, Sh31 fc, Sh4e73, Shlaa2 

260 data Sh31c0,Shl22e,Sh4ed0 

10 rem Infinite energy routine for Golden path on the Atari St. First type in this listing, insert a blank 

30 rem disk and run. To play,double click on GLOAD.PRG then when the disk stops insert Golden path disk 

40 rem and press a key. Program should now load with Infinite Energy. 

70 rem ************************************************** 

80 def seg=0 

90 for n=Sh7fd00 to Sh7fd75 step 2 

100 read a:poke n,a 

110 next n 

120 bsave "gload.prg",Sh7fd00, 117 

130 data 6h601a, ShOOOO, Sh0058, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO 

140 data ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, ShOOOO, Shf f f f , Sh4f fa, ShOOfe 

150 data Sh2f 3c, ShOOOO, Sh0200, Sh487a, Shfef 4, Sh2f 3c, Sh004a, ShOOOO 

160 data Sh4e41, Sh3f 3c, Sh0007, Sh4e41, Sh4267, sh487a, Sh0034, Sh3f 3c 

170 data Sh004e, Sh4e41, Sh487a, Sh0029, Sh487a, Sh0025, Sh487a, Sh0014 

180 data Sh2f 3c, Sh004b, Sh0003, Sh4e4 1, Sh2040, Sh4268, ShlcdS, Sh4ee8 

190 data ShOlOO, Sh6175, Sh746f ,Sh5c67, sh6l6d,Sh652e,Sh7072,Sh6700 

200 data Sh2a2e,Sh2a00, ShOOOO 





i£ ss i§ I 




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Joysticks have become an integral part of our computer systems, it seems that every 
home-computer owner has at least one. But, is it the right one? The market seems to be 
awash with sticks; how, then, can you be sure that you are buying the right one for 
you? By using our supertest survey, that's how! We at ST Action have gathered to- 
gether a number of controllers and over the next few pages we will discuss their merits 
and shortfalls. The final decision is yours, but to help you we have tested the sticks 
against three different types of game. Each game tests a different aspect of the 
joystick's design. By deciding which type of game you play most, you can pick which 

stick would be most suitable for you - Nick Clarkson 

Game A: Skulldiggery I Game B: Karate Kid II 

Game C: Xenon 

Skulldiggery was previously available 
from Nexus but it can now be obtained 
from us at the ST World office. The game 
is of the fast and furious cave-maze 
genre, requiring the solution of a number 
of puzzles, and above all, a keen sense of 
timing. Joysticks need to be responsive 
to quick directional changes and to 
precise, fast positioning. 

Karate Kid Part II is another of those 
beat'em-up games, and is available 
from Microdeal. The game combines the 
use of all the directional controls and the 
fire button. To master the game, a player 
must have total control over his stick. As 
all eight directions are used, the sticks 
must be precise in their positioning, and 
the fire buttons must be positive. 

Xenon, from Melbourne House, is the 
zap'em-up game which has had a simul- 
taneous release in the arcades. The 
action is fast and sticks will need to 
withstand plenty of fire button bashing. 
Movement is also of paramount impor- 
tance. All directions are used and swift 
movements to avoid enemy fire are not 


■1 11 II 1 



* fc B 

j i^ hi 







Star Trak, by R.H. Design 

Hmmm, the Star Trak cannot really be called a joystick; by my 
definition a joystick, as the title implies, should include a stick. 
The Star Trak comes in the shape of a large, television remote- 
control unit. Situated on the top section of the unit are the 
control buttons. These are positioned in a circular pattern, 
similar to a clock. The centre button is a simple fire button. 
This can be changed, by using a switch located at the bottom 
of the unit, between autofire, short burst, and normal modes. 
Encircling the fire button are eight directional controls, which 
simply act like a traditional joystick, giving a positive feel 
when depressed. The outermost circle of buttons are best 
described as directional fire buttons. These eight buttons, will 
be of no use in some games but with the karate games they 
really prove their worth. Experimenting with the outer circle 
will bring some novel and interesting effects. The controller's 
cable is inserted at the rear of the unit and the cord length is 

Being such a radical design, the StarTrak is somewhat 
awkward to use. Only after some perseverance does the unit 
really begin to show its potential value. The unit seemed to 
work poorly with game A; however, after a second visit to the 
game, the Star Trak began to shine. It was with game B that 
the unit performed well - the above-mentioned directional fire 
buttons really proved their worth. The unit fared adequately 
with game C, the directional buttons needing a little effort to 
master. Overall, the Star Trak is of a revolutionary design and 
it will need some time for a player to feel comfortable with, but 
once mastered, the Star Trak will become a force to be 
reckoned with. 

Terminator, by Robtek 

Mow here is a joystick that certainly is different. The Termina- 
tor, as can be clearly seen, looks like a hand-grenade. Firmly 
grasped in eitherthe left or right hand, the Terminator feels very 
comfortable. The stick is found on top of the unit and is 
somewhat short, but it is fully microswitched. The fire button is 
located under the grenade's handle, although depressing the 
whole handle will activate it. Every hand-grenade has a pin. 
The Terminator's pin keeps the handle in place, but I found that 
it got in the way; after pulling the pin and removing the handle, 
the Terminator became a much more comfortable unit despite 
it loosing that aggressive bomb-type look. The fire button, 
although not incorporating autofire, is quite reliable. The stick 
itself proved to be somewhat awkward and the diagonal 
movements in particular seemed difficult to achieve. 

The joystick did not perform well with game A - the 
directional controls were poor. It was not until the joystick had 
been used for some time that the player could begin to use it 
well. As a result of the poor diagonal controls, the Terminator 
did not perform well with game B. More often than not, I found 
myself open to attack and not being able to defend myself, 
ouch! Game C, too, did not perform well with the Terminator. 
Overall, the Terminator will not make a "big bang" with the 
gamesplaying public. Apart from its gimmick value, I don't 
think this joystick will be too big a hit. 

TAC-3 and TAC-5, by Suncom 

Visually, the TAC-3 and TAC-5 are very similar. Apart from the minor differences in 
colour and the slight change in the design of the handles, the TACs look the same. But, 
as we all know, looks can be deceptive, and in this case they are. Both sticks are 
equipped with three fire buttons: two on the base, and the third on the top of the stick. 
The TAC-3 has no microswitches either on the fire buttons or on the directional points 
and, as a result, lacks that positive feel. The TAC-5, however, is fully microswitched 
apart from the fire button on the top of the stick. The TAC-5's diagonal movements 
feel very responsive. The special feature included within the stick's design, is that it 
will turn, thus helping the player aim the stick precisely. Both sticks can be held 
comfortably in the hand, or positioned securely on a flat surface. 

Game A tested the four basic movements of the joysticks. The TAC-3 was not 
as responsive as I would have liked, mainly due to its lack of microswitches and the 
height of the handle. The TAC-5, however, does have the greater technical attributes, 
but unfortunately, due to the moving stick, it too performed poorly. Game B saw the 
moving handle aid the control of the TAC-5. The directional positioning, combined 
with the positive fire buttons, made certain that the TAC-5 was a winner. Unfortunately 
the TAC-3 was not so impressive, the diagonal points proving poor. Neither joystick 
has an autofire facility, and this was sorely missed with game C. Both sticks performed 
adequately, the TAC-5 having the slight edge. Overall, the TAC-3 is somewhat of a 
let down, the lack of responsiveness being its shortcoming. The TAC-5, however, is 
an interesting joystick, the twisting movements being a help with some games but a 
real nuisance with others. It is definitely worth looking at. 




Elite, by Euromax 

If small is beautiful, the Elite from Eu- 
romax should prove to be the ideal 
stick for many gamesters. The red 
and black colour scheme is used yet 
again; oh why can't somebody think 
of something new? The Elite is a 
cheaply-priced joystick and, as a 
result, is not of the same standard as 
the more "professional" joysticks. 
There is no autofire facility with the 
Elite; the player's fingers will just 
have to work overtime! The stick's 
only fire button can be found at the 
front of the unit, and is well posi- 
tioned for either left or right-handers. 
The base unit is, perhaps, a little too 
large to be held in the hand. After a 
short period of time I found myself 
placing the unit on the desktop which 
helped to reduce my hand fatigue 
and give me a better response too! 
The stick itself is of standard design: 
a short shaft with the obligatory red 
ball crowning the top. Despite being 
a cheaper joystick, the Elite is fitted 
with short travel microswitches. I 
was somewhat impressed with the 
Elite's sensitive response and accu- 
racy - it's a little cracker. 

The Elite performed on an 
average level with game A, on the 
whole acting as requested and only 
once or twice did it seem to stick. 
Game B, showed that not only could 
the joystick cope with sharp direc- 
tional changes, but it could cope well 
generally. The Elite performed ade- 
quately with game C; the directional 
movement was average, but the lack 
of an autofire facility was definitely 
noticed. Overall, the Elite is a good 
robust joystick, and wonderful value 
for money. 

Competition Pro 

The Competition Pro has been with 
us for many years now. When it first 
appeared the Pro 5000 was the only 
model available. Mow, however, the 
Pro comes in a variety of different 
guises. The Pro 5000 is still available, 
although it now comes in two forms; 
the original black and red livery has 
been joined by the new clear model. 
Both models are fully microswitched 
(excluding the fire buttons) giving 
that all-important reassuring "click". 
The stick can be held comfortably in 
either hand, and because of the fire 
buttons being situated on either side 
of the casing, it can be used by left or 
right-handed players. In addition to 
the 5000 series, Dynamics have also 
produced the Competition Pro Extra. 
This stick is based upon the 5000 
models and, indeed, looks like the 
clear version. The added features of 
the Extra are to be found with the fire 
controls. Firstly the buttons are fully 
microswitched, this gives players a 
more controlled response. Housed at 
the rear of the Extra's base is a small 
red switch where three different firing 
modes can be selected: normal, 
autofire and a slow-motion mode! 
The slow-motion mode interrupts the 
movement of your playing piece, 
thus making it seem to slow down. I 
found little use for this new feature 
and it would probably only be of use 
in games where careful precise 
manoeuvring is required. 

When tested against game A, 
the Pro clearly had masterful direc- 
tional control - the microswitches 
proving their value. The comfort of 
the stick was questionable when it 
was tested with game B. Holding the 
stick and suddenly changing the di- 
rections soon takes its toll of the 
gameplayer's paws! Again, with 
game C, the stick became uncom- 
fortable after a while. The controls, 
however, proved precise, and the 
autofire incorporated within the Extra 
worked like a dream. Overall, either 
the Pro 5000, or the Pro Extra would 
prove to be worthy additions to any 
joystick collection. Recommended. 

The Professional 

We all know the old adage: which 
came first, the chicken or the egg? 
The answer to this question is plainly 
ambiguous. The first impression of 
Euromax's Professional, however, is 
the striking similarity between itself 
and the Competition Pro range. The 
Euromax joystick comes in two sepa- 
rate varieties, autofire and non- 
autofire models. The standard colour 
scheme is used with the autofire joys- 
tick, whilst a very smart yellow and 
black livery is applied on the standard 
model. Both sticks have standard, 
short-travel microswitches, the stan- 
dard model also having mi- 
croswitched fire buttons. The base 
unit of the joystick is, perhaps, a little 
too large to be held in the hand. It 
works well when pinned down to a 
desk top, the stick having a textured 
surface providing an area for a 
steadying hand to grip. Apart from the 
difference in the shape of the base, 
and the square fire buttons, there is 
little to say about the Euromax joys- 
ticks apart from they very closely 
resemble the Competition Pro range. 
The Euromax performed 
moderately well with game A. The 
directional movement was adequate 
but it did, however, seem to stick 
occasionally. Game B tested the di- 
agonal movements of the stick and 
these performed well and the interac- 
tion with the fire button was also good. 
The joysticks worked well with game 
C and the autofire proved an essential 
asset. Overall, the Euromax joysticks 
are good solid units which are worthy 
of any collection. They are also com- 
parable with the Competition Pro 



Suncom Joystick 

Well this has to be the forefather of 
them all - even the Competition Pro 
stick must have had its inspiration 
from this stick. The unit is exactly the 
same design as when it first appeared 
on the original Atari VCS systems, 
way back in the early 1980's. I, for 
one, was rather amazed to see that a 
company still bothers to manufacture 
the Joystick; I was sure it had died its 
death long ago. The base unit is 
square in shape and can be held quite 
comfortably in the hand. The single 
fire button is located in the top left- 
hand corner of the unit. The Joystick, 
therefore, is of little use to left-handed 
players unless they are contortionists 
and can stretch their thumb over the 
unit. The stick itself is a plastic rod 
housed within a rubber casing. The 
usual positive feel of a microswitch 
cannot be found here either; the Joys- 
lick relies on the old-fashioned pad 
system. As a result of its archaic de- 
sign, the Joystick is somewhat unre- 
sponsive and, as we all know, it is 
prone to fatal accidents. 

Surprisingly, the Joystick 
worked quite well with game A but, 
due to its lack of response, it did fail 
from time to time - often at that crucial 
moment. Game B proved to be a 
nightmare for the humble Joystick. 
The diagonal controls were, at best, 
poor. I found it difficult to select the 
moves I wanted, and when I eventu- 
ally found them, the computer had 
already decked me! The Joystick was 
adequate with game C. My thumb 
soon began to ache due to the lack of 
an autofire facility, and the move- 
ments were sometimes a little quirky. 
Overall, the Joystick is a relic from 
the past that should have stayed 
there. It is slow in its response and 
prone to serious damage. It is only of 
any value for its laughability factor. 

Cheetah Mach 1 

The Mach 1+, from Cheetah Market- 
ing, is another of those tall joysticks. 
The unit should be stuck down on a 
flat surface before use; the obligatory 
suction cups for this operation can be 
found on the base of the unit. The 
Mach 1 + has been designed for either 
left or right-handed players, and in- 
corporates four fire buttons. The first 
two are located on either side of the 
base and appear to be microswitch 
controlled and are very firm. They 
did, however, tend to stick occasion- 
ally, but perhaps this will cease with 
wear. At the rear of the base there is 
the autofire switch, detailed simply 
with the on/off logo. The stick itself is 
of the steel-shaft variety, providing 
durability. Housed within the stick are 
the other two fire buttons: a trigger- 
type button and a thumb-activated 
top button. Both of these buttons feel 
somewhat unresponsive; no reassur- 
ing "clicks" here. Again, the stick is 
microswitched and feels good and the 
only poor observation was that the 
distance between up and down, or left 
and right, seemed to be a little exces- 
sive. I feel that should the stick be 
used with extra-fast action games, it 
could have a rather shorter lifespan 
than some of the other sticks with 
shorter handles. 

The Mach 1 + did not perform 
well with game A, the swift changes in 
direction needed a quicker response 
which the Mach 1*- failed to supply. 
Game B fared only a little better. The 
fire buttons worked well but, again, 
the quick changes in directions were 
few and far between. The joystick per- 
formed adequately with game C, the 
fire buttons combined with the 
autofire facility provided good weap- 
onry control, while the directional 
control was satisfactory. Overall, I 
thought the Cheetah Mach 1 * was a 
good sound joystick but it does not 
appear to perform well with games 
that require rapid movements. But, 
having tried it with a flight simulation 
program, I feel it could earn a great 
deal of admiration from the more 
serious game players. 

Datex Microphaser 

The Microphaser is a Joystick in the 
true sense of the word. Its appearance 
is that of the original aeroplane genre. 
The stick is red and black in colour, its 
square base has four large, rubber 
suction pads enabling it to be firmly 
attached to a flat surface. The stick 
has a fire button on either side of the 
base, and an extra button housed on 
top of the handle. It is, therefore, 
compatible for either left or right- 
handed players. Positioned at the 
front of the base is a small red LED 
indicator. This illuminates whenever 
a button is depressed, thus assuring 
the player that the connection has 
been made. Underneath the base can 
be found a small switch and position- 
ing it in the desired position toggles 
the firing action between normal and 
autofire modes. The stick itself is 
constructed with a strong, steel shaft, 
and like most sticks today, it is also 
fully microswitched. The handle has 
been moulded to fit into the player's 
hand and is very comfortable. 

The Microphaser fared well 
with game A. I expected its high 
handle to be a minor inconvenience. 
However, the stick was very respon- 
sive which made precise positioning 
very easy. The same was true of the 
stick when tested against game B, 
only the tall handle providing a minor 
irritation. Game C, was a delight to 
play. The slick movements were 
smooth and positive, and the autofire 
function invaluable. Overall, the 
Microphaser is a fine joystick. Its 
sturdy structure suggests it could 
withstand a great deal of punishment, 
and I could fully recommend it to any 



Microblaster, by Datex 

The Microblaster is yet another stick from Datex. Dressed in 
the now traditional red and black livery, the Microblaster owes 
much to the Competition Pro joystick range. The stick is fully 
microswitched, including the fire buttons. Again, there are 
buttons on either side of the base, thus enabling anyone to use 
it. As with the Microphaser, an autofire control switch can be 
found under the base unit. Positioning of this switch allows 
either normal or autofire modes to be used; the autofire mode, 
however, is only operational when the fire button is depressed. 
The stick itself has the standard eight-way movement, and 
gives off the comforting positive "click" when moved. The 
joystick is a hand-held unit and although it is comfortable for 
a while, the player's hand soon tires. 1 found myself holding the 
joystick to the desk, the small rubber feet on the base 
providing an adequate hold. 

The stick played well with game A; all of the directional 
movements reacted positively. The precise siting of the 
Skulldiggery cavemite was very easy and this, combined with 
the fire button control, showed the Microblaster to be out- 
standing with this game. The joystick Uso performed ex- 
tremely well with game B, the kung-fu actions tested all the 
stick's directional movements; the Microblaster truly does 
have eight-way switches. Game C demonstrated the stick's 
outstanding directional qualities, and also showed that the 
autofire function was above average. Overall, the Microblas- 
ter is a joystick of an extremely high quality, easily matching 
the Competition Pro Extra. Recommended. 

The Joyball, by Datex 

The Joyball, as its name suggests, is not a stick. This controller 
is rather radical in appearance. The base, shaped somewhat 
like a boomerang, has sets of fire buttons on both the left and 
right of the control. The ball itself sits proudly in the centre of 
the unit. The shape makes the stick ideal for younger players, 
as not only does it capture the gameplayer's attention, but it 
also feels very comfortable, especially when nestled in a 
cupped hand. The unit has two different types of fire button, 
each available to either left or right-handed players, a normal 
fire mode and the obligatory autofire. Both buttons produce the 
desired effect and are very reliable. The Ball, however, even 
though being fully microswitched, did not perform as well as I 
expected. The movement was adequate, but only after the 
player had become accustomed to its awkward handling. 

The Joyball, when tested against game A, proved to be 
very quirky in its positioning. Rapid changes in direction were 
poorly implemented, the game becoming tedious as a result. 
Game B did not fare much better. The game requires a good 
interaction between the stick and the fire buttons. The buttons 
performed adequately, but the diagonal positioning of the stick 
was non-existent. Game C befell the same fate - the directional 
controls not giving the desired results. The only redeeming 
feature was the autofire which performed with good effect. 
Overall, the Joyball did not live up to our expectations. Its 
appearance is interesting, although the handling is poor. Pa- 
tience and determination are qualities a player would need if he 
were to succeed with the Joyball. 

TAC-2, by Suncom 

The TAC, Totally Accurate Controller, range has been around for some time. I can 
remember selling the TAC-2 from a computer shop way back in 1 983. The TAC sold 
extremely well due largely to the decathlon-type games that were popular at that 
time. TheTAC-2 has a nicely compact base unit that nestles in the player's hands.The 
two fire buttons, located in the top right and left corners of the base allow the stick to 
be used by anyone. It was, however, not these factors which made this particular 
joystick sell well. The actual stick is made of a steel shaft, and the distance the stick 
has to be moved between left and right is minimal. This ensured that the TAC-2 was 
nearly indestructible from constant "waggling". The unit houses no microswitches 
and, therefore, is not as responsive as other "professional" joysticks. The positive feel 
is also sadly lacking, but the TAC-2 is still an "old faithful". 

Game A worked well with the TAC-2; all the movements were executed when 
required and the sudden directional changes were good. Game B, too, worked quite 
well. The diagonals, however, were sometimes hard to find and valuable points lost 
as a result. The stick performed reasonably well with game C, but, like Suncom's 
Joystick, the lack of microswitches and an autofire facility proved to be its downfall. 
Overall, the TAC-2 is a joystick that will withstand a "good beating". It is not as 
responsive as the more modern sticks, but, given its life history, it is clear to see that 
the TAC-2 is made of strong stuff. 




Quickshot II Turbo, by Spectraoideo 

Like the Competition Pro, the Quickshot range, from Spectravideo, has been with us 
for some time now. The Quickshot II Turbo is the latest, and for my money the finest, 
addition to the family. Scarlet and black in colour, the Quickshot is of the aeroplane- 
joystick type. Positioned on the base of the unit are four suction cups which will adhere 
the joystick to any flat surface, thus providing a strong hold. The handle itself is 
economically designed and is equally acceptable to either left or right-handed 
players. Two fire buttons are housed within the handle, the first is a simple trigger-style 
button, while the second sits atop the unit and is activated with the player's thumb. 
Nobbly pads are attached to the side of the base, and these provide a useful grip for 
the player's steadying hand. The autofire switch can be found at the rear of the base; 
both normal and autofire modes are catered for. An option for the Amstrad C464 is 
also included, but I couldn't find a use for it! 

I was surprised with the Quickshot II Turbo as my past experience with this 
company's sticks has not been good. The Turbo performed adequately with game A, 
the directional controls were average; I feel that high-handled joysticks, such as the 
Turbo, do not work well with maze-type games. Game B tested the interaction of the 
stick's movement control and the fire button. The Turbo performed exceptionally well, 
and I was particularly impressed with the stick's diagonal movements. It was with 
game C that the Quickshot came into its own. The benefit of the autofire facility and 
the smooth control proved the Turbo to be truly masterful. Overall, the Quickshot II 
Turbo is a good, sound joystick that will doubtless find its way into many collections. 


They Performed... 


Game A 

Game B 

Game C 

Competition Pro 




Competition Pro Extra Good 



Euromax Professional 




Euromax Elite 








Mach 1+ 








Mi crobl aster 




Quickshot II Turbo 




Star Trak 




Suncom Joystick 




















Cheetah Marketing Ltd, 
Norbury House, Norbury Road 
Fairwater, Cardiff, CF5 3AS 


Jubilee Drive, Loughborough, 

Leics.LEll OXS 

Euromax Electronics Ltd, 
Bessingby Ind Estate, Bridlington. 

R.H. Design, 

Units 2 & 3, Stonefall Stables 
Stonefall Avenue, Harrogate, HG2 7NR 

Dynamics Marketing Ltd, 
Coin House, New Coin Street, 
Royton, Oldham. 

MicroProse (JK(Suncom) 
2, Market Place, Tetbury 

Spectravideo Ltd, 

165 Garth Road, Morden, Surrey. 


Unit 4, Isleworth Business Complex, 
57 St John's Road, Isleworth, Middx 






L/R Hand 


Competition Pro 


£14 . 95 


24 Months 




Competition Pro 

500 Clear 

£15 . 95 


24 Months 




Competition Pro Extra 

£15 . 95 


24 Months 




Euromax Professional 



6 Months 




Euromax Pro Autofire 

£18 . 95 


6 Months 




Euromax Elite 



6 Months 





£ 9.95 


12 Months 




Mach 1+ 



12 Months 





£ 9.95 


12 Months 





£12 . 95 


12 Months 




Quickshot II Turbo 

£10 . 95 


12 Months 




Star Trak 


R H Design 

12 Months 




Suncom Joystick 

£ 5.99 


90 Days 





£10 . 99 


24 Months 







24 Months 





£15 . 99 









12 Months 










33 Orrnskirk Road, 
Preston, Lanes., PR 1 20P. 
Tel: (0772)21474 <1 line) 
(0772) 203166 (5 lines) 
Bui/Board (0772) 27236 
6.00pm to 9.00pm 














■ AGE RANGE 5 -10 






Educational Software written for under ten's. 

Let your children use the computer 

for fun and learning 



AGE RANGE 5 -10 














anima te up m :o ma frame im ptxtb wid* k? 







\M^m Mas 












/ U/ 







4.fil!IHR a "(M» 




33 Ormskirk Road, 
Preston, Lanes.. PR1 2QP. 
Tel: (0772)21474 (1 line) 
(0772) 203166 (5 lines) 
Bui/Board (0772) 27236 
6.00pm to 9.00pm 



This Company has given years of full support to ATARI users Countrywide from their retail shop premises at Ormskirk Road, 
Preston. Now from their NEW Mail Order Depot they can offer the same excellent service to all Mail Order Customers. All Software 
and Hardware is fully tested prior to selling. This ensures that Customers receive working items so that returned goods, and all 
attendant frustration are a thing of the past. All Hardware is supported by our 'ON SITE* engineers, therefore quick turn round 
on all repairs is guaranteed. 

All prices quoted are fully VAT inclusive and there are no 'hidden extras', what you see is what you get. Prices include delivery in 
Mainland UK . For next day delivery add £3.00. Phone for latest prices/releases. 

All Hard Disks come with Utilities to 
cure the 40 Folder problem + Backup 
Utilities, Fast Read Write etc. 

Atari 20 mg £575.00 

Triangle 20 mg Hard Disk £575.00 

Supra 20 mg £550.00 

30 Meg (Cumana) £699.00 

40 Meg (Triangle) £799.00 

Dot Matrix 

Star LC 10 £225.00 

Star LC 10 colour option PHONE 

National Panasonic PHONE 



LQ800 24pinD/M PHONE 
NEC Pinwriter- 2000 (24pin) PHONE 

Epsom LQ 500 (24pin) PHONE 




Lazer Printers PHONE 

PC Clones PHONE 


All Printers, Disk Drives, etc., supplied 
with cables, etc. 


All Hardware is covered for 12 months 
by our service dept. and is tested 
prior to delivery to assure satisfaction. 







520STM Packages 



+ Mouse 
+ Software 
+ Mouse 
+ Hi-Res Mon 
+ Software 
+ Mouse 
+ Colour Mon 
+ Software 








+ Mouse 
+ Software 
+ Mouse 
+ Software 

+ 1 Meg Upgrade £350.00 
+ Mouse 
+ Software 
+ 1 Meg Upgrade 
+ 1 Meg2ndDrive£485.00 
Equal to 1040STF + 0.5 Meg Drive 
+ Modulator 

For Med Res Col Mon add 
For High Res Mono add 

3.5 D/D 
Per Disk £1.99 

10 Disks £16.00 

10 Disks + 
Plastic lib case £17.00 
100 Disks + cases £150.00 
500 Disks + cases £650.00 

5.25 D/S 

D/D 46TPI 






All Disks are covered by 
unconditional lifetime guarantee. 


We also stock a full range of quality 
P/D ST Software at £3.99 per Disk. 
Send S.A.E. for catalogue. 

Our ATARI trained engineers will 
repair all Hardware in minimum 
time at competitive rates. Please carry 
a 90 day warranty. 

Disk Drives 
Hard Disks 


2.5 and 4 Meg Upgrades available for 
the 520 STFM's. These are very easy 
to fit. So no need to sell your 520/ 
1040, just upgrade to a 'Mega ST'. 

Upgrade Boards 


Boards + 2.5 Meg 


Boards + 4 Meg 


1 Meg Upgrade STM 


1 Meg Upgrade STFM 


Triangle 1 mg D/Drive 
Triangle 2 x 1 mg D/Drive 
Pro Draw Graphics Tab. 
Cumana 1 Meg D/Drive 


All Drives 

come complete with 

STFM Upgrade fitting service £1 5.00 

If any of the above Upgrades are 
purchased with Hardware then deduct 
£5.00 from total. 






TO ORDER simply send, or phone your order.stating full name, 

address, Visa or Access No.'s, Cheque or Money Order. 

Make payable to : 


33 Ormskirk Road, Preston, Lancas., PR1 2QP. 

Telephone (0772) 21474 / 27236 

To celebrate the launch of their Test Drive driving simula- 
tion, Electronic Arts are offering an amazing day out at one 
the country's leading racing schools at Brands Hatch. 25 
runners-up will receive an Electronic Arts mug and tee- 
shirt. All that's between you and the seat of a Formula 
First racing car are the following questions: 



911 TURBO 


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e Pi ice 

En: ire type. h:k 

x>Y: fUH 




Coiippessiofi ratio! 

? e.i 



Blip C» ryn &AZ rat: 

282 1 5588 


12 is 

Iopque (• m t I b- f t . 

278 1? 488f 

1/4 nile: 

13 4s 


4 sf r-jur-l 

1? 183**1; 

fodcins fron BSnph 


lop speed 


Tires; Dunlop SP Si^t 

ir Spr- D4, 



2BS/SSVR-K front/ 

Lateral Ac 

eel: B &4ff 

245/45'fl-it kv 





The closing date for entries is 10th May. The winner will be the first correct entry pulled 
out of a hat. The runners-up will be the next 25 correct entries drawn. 

The Questions: 
1) Was is the engine capacity of the Lamborghini Countach featured in Test Drioe? 

2) What is the 0-60mph time of a Porsche 911 Turbo? 

3) Why is Ferrari's flag ship car called the Testa Rossa? 

4) What is the nationality of the current Formula 1 Grand Prix World Champion? 

5) Who is the president ofEA? 

ST Action Competition Rules: 

The Editor's decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into regarding competitions or the results of competi- 
tions. All prizes are offered believing them to be available. If, however, a prize is unavailable we reserve the right to 
substitute an alternative of comparable value. No cash alternatives will be given. Results will be published as soon as pos- 
sible and prizes despatched as quickly as possible. Please refrain from phoning regarding competition results or prize 
delivery. Employees of Gollner Publishing Ltd and companies participating in competitions are not eligible to enter. 

I would like to enter the Electronic Arts Test Drive Competition. I have read the ST 
Action competition rules and agree to abide by them. 

Answer to Question 1 (litres or CC) : 

Answer to Question 2 (seconds): 
Answer to Question 3 (under 15 words): 

Answer to Question 4 
Answer to Question 5 


Post code 

Daytime telephone number 


Wandering around the P.C.W. show on the 
second day I dutifully revisited all the 
stands for the umpteenth time. I began to 
notice the transfixed smiles on the pretty 
promotion girls turning into strained 
grimaces as they thrust their leaflets and 
sales paraphernalia in the faces of passers- 
by, while the stands had lost their sheen 
and appeal under a hundred thousand 
sticky little finger-prints. 1 sought refuge in 
the galleries and watched the throng of 
eager little bodies swarm around the stands 
like soldier ants with bulging goody-bags. 
Suddenly, 'Hello Jason, you took knack- 
ered, sit down and haue a beer ' I quickly 
glanced at the name above the stand to see 
which company was showing such uncom- 
mon decency and then at the name tag 
pinned on the gentleman who was now 
pumping my right arm with great enthusi- 
asm. The company name I knew, Movagen 
- the gentleman, Tim Bosher, I had never 
seen before in my life. 

Ripping the ring-pull from the can with 
equal vigour, Tim lead the conversation. 
'Bloody good show this!' I agreed and 
suggested that he could profit from 
charging for the beer as I had just spent the 
last ten minutes in an ever-increasing 
queue at one of Olympia's ridiculously 
inadequate bars. In addition to a well- 
stocked refrigerator, Tim had the letters 
P.R. written all over him, but I read it from 
his identity badge. I made the false 
presumption that the Managing Director of 
Movagen had employed an expensive 
public relations man for the show, leaving 
himself free to clinch big deals or wander 
around trying to get a better reception on 
his portable Cellphone. I silently concluded 
that Movagen must be a pretty big organi- 
zation and ended the chat by promising to 
phone up the following week to set a date 
for an interview. 

Six a.m. on a cold winter morning, we 
started the four hour trip to Movagen who 
are based in the heart of Birmingham. With 
new batteries in the tape recorder, pencil 
sharpened and a hundred probing ques- 
tions stored in my memory banks, we 
swept past Spaghetti Junction and the less 
desirable areas of Brum and straight into a 
suburb where I was expecting to find the 

Bruce Jordan - Company MD 

sort of industrial estate which is filled with 
those enormous new prefab office-cum- 
warehouses. We finally found the car park 
at the back of some little shops which, far 
from smelling of new-laid tarmac with crisp 
white lines and allotted parking spaces 
saying M.D., Janitor and Visitor, resembled 
the Somme and was shared by a girly- 
fashion boutique called Leather and Lace, 
amongst others. We met Tim in the car 
park and followed him through a back door 
pausing only to scrape half the car park 
from our shoes. He lead us up a short flight 
of stairs and into the Novagen nerve centre. 
The main office took me totally by surprise; 
it is a tribute to organized clutter and not 
quite big enough to swing a mouse around 
on its shortest tether. 

Tim introduced us to the rest of the 
Movagen office staff; Bruce Jordan, Gladys 
the computer, and a reliable and unargu- 
mentative secretary - a telephone answer- 
ing machine. Tim rushed off to the kitchen 
and before we could acquaint ourselves 
with Bruce, came back with coffees and 
teas quicker than a veteran charlady. My 
first question was born from natural 
curiosity. 'What positions do you hold 

in the company?' 

'Well, Bruce looks after the business 
and administration and I deal with promo- 
tion, public relations, answer the phone...' 

'and make the tea?' 

'And make the tea. ' 

'Mo fancy titles?' 


'Bruce, what did you do before Mo- 

'I've based my career around computers 
in one way or another. ' 

'How long have you been in the 

'lean remember the time when a water- 
cooled mainframe computer which 
completely filled a large room could only 
manage to generate about as much 
memory as those calculators that you can 
buy in petrol stations for a couple of pence. ' 

'Did dinosaurs pose much of a problem 
in those days?' 
(He grins), 'Funny!' 

Tim, on the other hand, has only just 
come around to the fact that word process- 


Backlash - Ihe second Novagen ST-game released to much aclaim 

ing is not just for people who can't use a 
pen. Later, he was to demonstrate the dizzy 
heights he had achieved on an old 800XL 
which he affectionately calls Gladys. Tim 
has a thriving P.R. company which he runs 
in an adjacent room. 'Do you deal solely 
with Movagen's publicity?' 

'Bruce and I are old friends and 
Novagen takes up quite a bit of time purely 
because we are based in the same office, 
but I also deal with Software Express 
amongst others. ' 

'Were you the instigator of that amusing 
little vaudeville act which Ernst Wienzettl 
and Peter Fellows put on at the P.C.W. 

'They 're nice guys doing good busi- 
ness. The little song and dance was their 
idea - / would have had leggy dancing girls 
as welt. ' 

He broke off the conversation to answer 
the phone as he was busy organizing a 
charity night at some nightclub in town and 
was arranging the times at which the star 
guests were supposed to be making an 
appearance. 'Tell the Carrot he's got to be 
there by ten!' 

'Bruce, how did you meet Paul 

'Nouagen Is fundamentally Paul's 
company and. at the time we met, he had 
just written Encounter and wasn't doing a 
lot with W. 

'Encounter, was that not one of the first 
games to be shipped over to the States?' 

'It was the very first game from Britain 
to make it into the U.S. software market, 
although they had been sending stuff over 
here for years. Anyway, it was pretty 
successful here and over there. Then, in '84, 
Paul just happened to mention to me one 
day that he had discovered a way of 
making games on tape load in a fraction of 
the time. I asked him when he had made 
this discovery and he nonchalantly said, 
"Oh, a while back." - he's a bit tike that. 
This was when games used to lake fifteen 
to twenty minutes to load and, after what 
seemed like a lifetime, the tape would end 
and a message appeared on screen saying 
'error at line something or other', ' 

'The cause of many teenage suicides 

'More than likely! I figured that it was 
an extremely marketable concept and 
wasted no time in getting it copyrighted. In 

no time at ail, companies wanted Novaload 
in their games and we quickly agreed a 
percentage that we would receive on every 
single game sold with Novaload.' 

'Money for nothing?' 

'The rewards of pure genius!' 

'You came into the eight-bit market 
relatively late, do you regret that?' 

'Not really, I hadn't thought about it. I 
regret that we may have missed out on 
making some money, but things have 
turned out just fine. ' 

'With Encounter selling well and 
Novaload in full swing, what was next on 
the agenda? 1 

'Paul was working on a game which 
was quite different to the usual popular 
shoot'em-up type games. It was a bit of a 
gamble and I was anxious about the 
amount of time he was taking on ft ' 

This is Mercenary, I presume.' 

'Right! He goes into the finest detail and 
seems quite unconcerned with deadlines - 
he doesn 't really work to deadlines. ' 

'Doesn't have to or won't?' 

'A bit of both really.' 

'Who thought of the name Mercenary?' 

'Paul's idea, he is rather good at 
thinking up names for software. ' 

The computer press seem to be 

reporting an imminent demise of the eight- 
bit machine and some are even predicting 
obsolescence within a year, did you 
perceive a change at the P.C.W. Show?' 


'Do you think it is wishful thinking from 
the press because they are bored with 
writing about the same old things?' 

'Probably! From our point of view, we 
are still selling Mercenary, albeit to a lesser 
extent, on eight-bit and are enjoying re- 
kindled sales of the game on the ST and 
Amiga. ' 

The basic premise is to adapt then?' 


'What are your views on companies 
who churn out straight transitions from 
eight-bit to sixteen-bit regardless of 

'Some of it is justified. For example, old 
favourites and software of Mercenary's 

'You have just answered my next 
question.' 'What?' 

'Were you not concerned that people 
might ask themselves why they had bought 
a sixteen-bit machine when they could run 
most of the software on their eight-bit 
machine for less money?' 

'I reckon if we hadn't brought it out on 
the ST we would have had complaints. ' 

'Does this show in the sales?' 


'Do you think that it is attributed to the 
quality of your software rather than its 
commercial appeal?' 

7 think the fact that we have released 
so few games which are still very popular is 
evidence in itself. ' 

We adjourned for lunch where com- 
puter-orientated conversation was sus- 
pended and chat turned to a variety of 
subjects ranging from the Grand Prix to the 
Lombard Rally (Now that's variety! ED). In 
the afternoon we said goodbye to Tim and 
followed Bruce to Paul Woakes' house 
where, hopefully, we would be granted a 
rare interview. We were pre-warned that 
Paul was extremely shy, didn't like having 
his photograph taken and would often go 
off and do his own thing without warning. 
They described him as a cross between a 
moody Marlon Brando and a potty Patrick 
Moore and I began to wonder whether they 
were trying to create a mysterious cult 

The Mercenary Compendium - Novagen's first ST release 





figure or were in fact doing an effective 
character assassination on an ordinary guy 
who doesn't go out much. 

Paul s home is a large pre-war house 
nestled comfortably in one of Birmingham's 
many suburbs. One aspect, however, made 
his house stand out from the rest - a large 
and very conspicuous T.V. satellite dish on 
the roof. Second only to computers, Paul's 
hobby is watching television. So, in 
between watching re-runs of Dallas which 
have been dubbed into Czechoslovakian, 
what was he working on at the moment? 
'I'm putting the finishing touches to 
Damocles for the ST. But the more detail I 
put into one aspect of the game, the more I 
have to add to other areas to balance it up. ' 

'How much detail do you think you 
have to add before it becomes superfluous, 
i.e. before your average computer user 
doesn't notice what could have taken you 
weeks to achieve?' 

This is necessary detail, such as the 
direction of the sun as it hits the planets 
and the shadow it casts. I'm working on 
the change in directional controls in space 
at the moment.' 


'Welt, a space vessel could be upside 
down so who is to say what is left or right 
Basically there is no left or right in space. ' 

'That's detail! I think Backlash is great, 
how did you create that desert scenery?' 

The backdrop came first and I just built 
the game around it, I cannot explain some 
of the things I do because sometimes they 
arrive by chance and sometimes after a 
process of long experimentation; it is almost 
impossible to explain in an abridged yet 
understandable fashion. ' 

'Which do you prefer to work on: the ST 
or the Amiga?' 

7 hate working on the Amiga because 
of the difficulty in getting any detailed 
programming literature - In fact, it's difficult 
to get any literature at all. The ST is more 
pleasant to work on and there is plenty of 
reading material to back it up. ' 

'What games have inspired you from 
the past and what did you enjoy playing?" 

VVn not a great games player but I do 
like simple arcade shoot 'em-ups, ' 

You surprise me.' 

'Really I enjoy creating games much 
more than playing them.' 

'Apart from Damocles, what else are 
you working on?' 

'I have discovered a way of stretching 
the data-holding capacity of a disk, but I'm 
not willing to go into any detail for obvious 
reasons. ' 

'Another Novaload-type money-spinner 

'Perhaps, ask Bruce!' 

I began this report by describing the 
show as a glitzy and attractive facade. It 
covers a bunch of egomaniacs who adopt a 
dog-eat-dog attitude and make millions out 
of pocket money - I did this for a reason. It 
was a real pleasure to meet Tim and Bruce. 
They joked about their humble office which 
is totally practical and quite adequate; they 
drive ordinary production cars although 
Bruce has been a devoted long-term Ferrari 
owner in the past. There is no pretence, 
they work well together and enjoy what 
they do. Bruce is quiet and thoughtful, 
whereas Tim is energetic, talkative and 
great fun. The time they spend waiting for 
Paul to finish products or mention off-hand 
that he has invented something which 
could make another small fortune, is 
funded by the longevity of their past 
products. Paul Woakes is no Howard 
Hughes nor Charles Foster Kane, he is your 
average suburban genius who plods along 
at his own pace. He has no deadlines nor 
visible worries and the time taken over the 
finest detail is time well spent as his 
software remains popular for ages. 

The basic ingredient for 
success seems to be: find 
one unassuming and un- 
genius, sit back and wait 
for results. They are thor- 
oughly nice guys in a 
'Mercenary 1 industry. 

by Jason Spiller. 


Tim Bosher - company Public Relations 




If you're a soccer fan* then ST Soccer's the game tor 
you. Superb Hi-Res graphics plus team colours, wind, 
weather and night pUy options mean thai one or two 
players have a real hard match with highly competitive 
play Animated supporters, electronic scoreboard and 
on icrcen rofercemg. kerp (he gamcplay fast and Var- 
ious Don't gel left outside the ground ST Soccers 
{Colour only one or two joysticks required ) 


Why settle for adventures wilh one or two characters? 
Tanglewood has five* And Tanglewood is all graphics 
(over 700K of them) and it's totally mouse controlled, 
with no texi entry, and unlike other adventures it's nearly 
always possible lo brush unless you do something 
deliberately stupid. Tanglewood is also played in real 
lime so you have only leti days to find the mining con* 
tracts and some areas are only accessible at night 
(Colour only) 


Available from ST dealers worldwide 

or from 

Box 68, St. Austell, Cornwall, England.PL25 4YB. 
Credit card orders phone 0726 68020 £1 pER ORDER 



If you've read David Stewart's five-page interview with Jeff Minter, you'll 

know what an exciting program Trip-A-Tron is. To mark the launch of Jeff's 

latest masterpiece, he's offering 10 copies to the lucky winners of this 

Llamasoft competition. 

To stand a chance of winning, the following questions must be answered. The winners will be the first 10 correct 
entries pulled from the hat after the closing date of 1 May 1 988. Most of the answers can be found within this issue 
of ST Action. 

1) Which is the rarest South American camel? 

2) Why is it so rare? 

3) What was Llamasoft's first game? 

4) What game was written by Jeff for the C64: 

a/ Papa Llama b/ Mama Llama c/ Rama Llama Ding Dong 

5) What is the connection between Trip-A-Tron and camels? 

A -. 9 ST Action Competition Rules: 

AnSV/er tO Question 1 I The Editor's decision is final and no correspon- 

- * * denee will be entered into regarding compeUtionsor 

AnSWer tO Question 2 : the results of competitions. All prizes are offered be- 

a _ lievlng them to be available. If, however, a prize is 

AnSWer tO Question 3 : unavailable we reserve the right to substitute an al- 

A — . . ternative of comparable value. No cash alternatives 

AnSWer tO Question 4 : will be given. Results will be published as soon as 



- possible and prizes despatched as quickly as pos- 

AnSWer tO Question 5 : ." sible. Please refrain from phoning regarding compe- 
tition results or prize delivery. Employees of Gollner 
Publishing Ltd and companies participating in com- 
_ , petitions ore not eligible to enter. 

Name rt 

Send entry to: 

Address Trip-A-Tron Competition 

ST Action, 

10 Theatre Lane 


West Sussex 

Daytime telephone number PO!9 1SR 

Post code 



NWCliHtUHlO T^ N* 


i i 

This is the first instalment of our look at what is available in the 
entertainment sector for the ST. Next month will see the rest of the list. 

Arcade games 

Academy, by CRL: 

Addictaball, Atttgata; 
Alrball, Mlcrodeal: 

Airball Const Set, Mlcrodeal: 

Altair, Infogrames: 

Arkanoid, Ocean: 
Backlash, Nooagen: 
Barbarian, Psygnosls: 
Barbarian, Palace Software: 

Battlezone, Atari Corp: 

BMX Simulator, Codemasters: 

Boulderdash Const Kit, Databyte: 

Bubble Bobble, Firebird: 

Bubble Ghost, Infogrames: 

Catch 23, Martecft; 

Chopper X, Mastertronlcs: 
Clever and Smart, Magic Bytes: 

Crafton and Xunk, Infogrames: 

Crazy Cars, Titws: 

Crystal Castles, Atari Corp: 

Dark Castles, Mlrrorsoft: 
Death Strike, Talent 
Deep Space, Psygnosls: 
Eagles Nest, Pandora: 

Eco, Imagine: 

Enduro Racer, Actiolslon: 

Extensor, Diamond: 


Formula 1 Grand Prix, Tynesoft: 
Gauntlet, OS Gold: 
Goldrunner, Mlcrodeal: 
Impact, Audiogenic: 
Indiana Jones, US Gold: 
Joe Blade, Players: 
Jump Jet, Anco: 
Jupiter Probe, Mlcrodeal: 
Kartlng Grand Prix, Anco: 
Leatherneck, Mlcrodeal: 

Space simulations are based on assumption and rarely manage to achieve what they set out to. This one has a 
minute game screen and is suffocated with sophisticated features. £19.95 
One of the lesser 'Breakout' clones, with special features and multiple screens, £1435 

An original and vast 3D game containing 150 rooms which are filled with broken glass and pointed edges that 
threaten to burst your Airball, as well as your ego. £24.95 

In cor\junctton with the original you can construct your own screens - as If 150 rooms were not enough! This is 
reputed to be the first 3D construction ML £14.95 

Representative of the many vertically-scrolling aerial-assault games available. You must avoid swarms of aircraft 
and destroy a fortress then repeat the same game ad Infinitum, £19,95 

The ultimate 'Breakout* clone and an absolute must for arcade game fans - pure addiction! £14.95 
A game with real impact, outstanding adrenaline-boosting action - one of my favourites! £19.95 
Points were won and lost in the battle of the Barbarians. This one has more variety but less action. £24.95 
Banned In Germany and rightly so. If mortal wounding, sickening sound effects and llzardmen playing 
soccer with decapitated heads is your bag, then you will not be disappointed - cheap horror! £14.95 
Ancient arcade classic tank battle In distinctive 3D vector graphics - an Inexpensive trip down memory lane! £14.95 
Surprisingly and thankfully the only BMX game available for the ST. £14.95 

Who could resist the opportunity of constructing his own Boulderdash screens. It also contains 16 pre-constructed 
levels to give you a few ideas. £24.95 

Living proof that there is a place for vacuous and harmless arcade entertainment in sixteen-blt computing - Infurl 
atingly addictive! £19.95 

An original multi-screen arcade game In which you manoeuvre a bubble-blowing ghost through a castle that Is filled 
with sharp Implements - recommended. £19.95 

Not a game which oozes immediate appeal and needs to be played thoroughly to be er\joycd. A ground-based search 
game with terrific vector graphics £19.95 

Below average horizontally-scrolling shoot*em-up - budget entertainment for a budget price. £9.95 
Clever and Smart you wilt be If you give this one a miss. A cantankerous game which aborts itself without provoca 
tlon or reason. £19.95 

Cult computer characters in a multi-room game with awkward controls and limited appeal £19.95 
A poor 'Outrun' rip-off with poor graphics and appalling game-play. £19.95 

Directing a teddy bear around mazes and up mountains may sound tike an Infantile pursuit, but the scenario does 
tittle justice to the mildly amusing and entertaining game-play - not exactly outstanding value for money. £14.95 
A ladder and platform game with the unusual feature of stereo sampled sound. Falls to inspire. £24.95 
A contradiction in terms! Cheap but not cheerful! £9.95 

Space 3D games are commonplace, and this, like many others, falls far short of 'Elite' and 'Mercenary'. £24.95 
Without doubt the best arcade-style military combat game on the market. With overhead 'Gauntlet'-style game-play, 
this game offers constant and frantic action - an essential addition to your collection! £19.95 

Call me old-fashioned but. In my opinion, copulating insects is dubious entertainment - stow but Interesting and cer 
talnly original. £19.95 

A mediocre transition of this popular arcade dirt-bike race. There are a number of rough edges which give the game a 
rushed and unfinished appearance * it could have been a lot better, £14.95 

Based on Tron ', this 3D laser cycle game consists of racing down corridors In a maze. The game-play Is bland with 
no sound effects and tittle variety. £19.95 

A rear-vlew t car-racing game inspired by Epyx's brilliant Pitstop - well worth checking out. £19.95 
A fair interpretation of the popular arcade game, comprising an overhead view of mazes and monsters. £24.95 
One of the first vertical-scrolling assault games. £24.95 
More brick busting 'Breakout'-style, with many enhanced features. £14.95 

You've seen the film now play an average, multi-level game vaguely resembling it - or see the film ten times. £19.95 
A sideways-scrolling combat game which concentrates more on finding kidnap victims than filling body bags. £9.95 
Although comprising a standard cockpit view, Jump Jet still fails to qualify as a simulation. £14.95 
An average vertically-scrolling aerial shoot'em up with two-player participation. £14.95 

The combination of big tracks, tittle /carts and droning sound effects makes this game an effective soporific. £9.95 
The latest in a long tine of 'Commando' combat games. £19.95 



. • 

Leviathan, English Software: 
Liberator, Tynesoft: 

Macadam Bumper, Infogrames: 
Major Motion, Mlcrodeat: 
Marble Madness, Electronic Arts: 

Mars Cops, Arcana: 

Mean Street, Mlrrorsoft: 

Mercenary, liovagen: 

Metro Cross, US Gold: 

Metropolis 2000, Eldersoft: 

MGT, Actlvlslon: 

Missing One Drold, Bug Byte: 

Mouse Trap, Tynesoft: 
Mudpies, Mlchtron: 

Ninja Mission, Mastertrontcs: 
Oids, Faster Than Light: 
Outcast, Mastertronlcs: 
Outrun, Sega: 

Pacland, Bug Byte: 
Pengy, Red Rat software: 
Phoenix, Infogrames: 

Pinball Factory, Mlcrodeat: 

Plutos, Micro value: 

Predator, Actlvlslon: 

Based on Zaxxon, this 3D game Is somewhat hackneyed and unoriginal but fairly respectable, £14.95 

This Is the best offering In their so-called 'Mlcrovalue' series, which consists of manoeuvring a hovercraft over a 

terrain that Is haunted by alt manner of bogeymen • limited appeal. £12.95 

A D.I.Y pinball construction kit which proves to be more entertaining than It sounds, £19.95 

Based on Spy Hunter, this game contains smoke-screens, oil slicks and predictable game-play. £19.95 

A real hybrid arcade game in which you must keep a marble rolling over a three-dimensional mountain range - a 

must for all hardened game players who need more of a challenge. £24.95 

In your pursuit of U.F.O's, you encounter very little variety. A 3D folly. £19.95 

A graphically appealing game which allows you to act the goat on a motorway. £24.95 

A foreboding challenge which has gained a massive cult following. Renowned for its long-term appeal. £24.95 

You direct an unlikely athlete over ingenious obstacles - an enjoyable game requiring lightning reflexes. £24.95 

An Irksome arcade shoot'em-up containing the usual features. £12.95 

You must manoeuvre a tank through a crystal palace to achieve this characterless and easily-forgotten game. £24.95 

You direct a dustbin-shaped droid around the screen, obliterating anything and everything In sight - you experience 

the full extent of the game's variety within the first ten seconds. £9.95 

A mildly challenging, multi-level platform game starring Marvin the mouse. £14.95 

Slapstick fun with circus clowns throwing custard pies at each other - presumably. It comes complete with a free 

screen wipe. £19.95 

A martial-arts game which has sacrificed distinct control for smooth-action characters - not one of the best. £9.95 

Brand new, above average, horizontally-scrolling shoot'em-up. £24.95 

A 'Skyfox' clone which is twice as good and half the price - Outcast by name, not by nature. £9.95 

This Is the only conversion of this brilliant and much-exploited arcade car race which is worth buying - ignore the 

rest and buy the best! £19.95 

This phenomenally successful arcade game goes slxteen-btt - with a slxteen-blt price to match. £19.95 

'Help Pengy save the Ice castle from ghouls and ghosts' - say no more! £14.95 

This has nothing to do with the arcade game of the same name. This is an original and challenging game in which 

you fly across a vector graphic path In space - recommended. £19.95 

Another pinball game and construction kit with better controls and more features than Macadam Bumper, Improve 

ments which you have to pay for. £24.95 

The only feature that separates this respectable vertically-scrolling aerial assault game from the others, Is the 

simultaneous two player option. £14.95 

'Commando-style' combat game which Is based on the film of the same name. £19.95 

,, "^^' M -»M 

Prohibition, Infogrames: 
Rampage, Actlvlslon: 
Rana Rama, Hewson: 
Roadrunner, O.S Gold: 
Rockford, Melbourne House: 
Screaming Wings, Red Rat: 
Sky Rider, Creation: 

Space Pilot, Anco: 
Spy V Spy, Databyte: 

Star Raiders, Atari corp: 
Star Wars, Domark: 

Stargllder, Ralnblrd: 

ST Protector and Space Station. 

Supersprint, Electric Dreams: 

Tau Cetl, CRL: 
Terramex, Grand Slam: 

Terrorpods, Psygnosts: 

Time Bandit, Mlcrodeat: 
Time Blast, Tynesoft: 
TNT, Infogrames: 

Tracker, Ralnblrd: 

Trail Blazer, Gremlin Graphics: 
Trauma, Infogrames: 
Wanderer 3D, Pyramlde: 
World's Greatest Epyx, Epyx: 

Xenon, Melbourne House: 
Xevious, US Gold: 

You control gun-sights across windows and doorways and shoot gangsters - limited long-term appeal. £19.95 
Make American cities took like central Beirut with the help of Godzilla and friends - simply dreadful! £14.95 
A 'Gaunttet'-style dungeon game In which you direct a frog around a dungeon - easily forgotten. 
Highly amusing conversion from the popular arcade game. The characters are smaller but the action Is great.£24.95. 
A 'Boulderdash' clone starring the gem muncher himself. Whatever you call it, the game's concept is faultless.£ 19.95 
The worst of a targe bunch of vertical scrolling shoot-em ups. £14.95 

A horizontally-scrolling aerial assault game. All the time and energy spent on trying to achieve smooth horizontal 
scrolling should have been used to think up a more original theme - a horizontal Goldrunner. £14.95 
A very ordinary space shoot'em-up. Does not work with TOS V1.09. £19.95 

Reputed to be the first dual-screen game, starring the spy characters from the 'MAD' comic. One of the first and best 
arcade adventures. The game play Is entertaining and amusing - unlike the price. £24.95 
This space fiasco is never short of aliens to blast. £14.95 

Based on the battles within the film of the same name, this game brings a whole new meaning to the phrase 'non 
stop action'! Stunning vector graphics, sound effects and speech synthesis. £14.95 

The slickest arcade game available for the ST, comprising vector graphics that almost induce travel sickness and 
great digitized music - an absolute must! £24.95 

The former Is an unimpressive 'Defender' clone, the latter Is a multi-level platform game with robots and flying 
ducks to avoid. I can understand the robots In a space station but, flying ducks? £24.95 

This conversion from the popular arcade game has lost none of its appeal. An aerial view of the track and four tittle 
racing cars, Induces the most reluctant to participate. £14.95 

The simple task of skimming across a desert in search of a reactor is complicated with baffling strategy. £19.95 
Flying vacuum cleaners, ferocious foliage and temples in the sky are just some of aspects that help to make this 
game one of the most unusual and confusing arcade and search games. £19.95 

Psygnosls's finest! This moon-based game has outstanding weaponry sound effects and graphics. However, the game 
play is somewhat confusing. £24.95 

A classic four way scrolling arcade adventure with plenty of zap. £29.95 

This dreadful 'Scramble'-style game Is priced as cheaply as possible - but not cheap enough! £9.95 
This 'Commando'-style combat game showed promise with Interesting graphics and different types of warfare. 
However, It lacks Impact, which Is so important for this style of game, £19.95 

Set In a labyrinth, this hybrid game is neither mindless shoot'em-up nor stuffy strategy. If you are looking for 
something different, then this could be the answer, £24.95 
Manoeuvring a ball over 3D landscape proves to have limited appeal. £24.95 
Another scroltlng shoot'em up check It out In the test this Issue £19.95 

A rather impressive 3D vector graphic space shoot'em-up - supplied with 3D glasses. £24.95. 
Comprising Super Cycle, Championship Wrestling, World Games and Winter games, A sports extravaganza for an 
extravagant price. £29.95 

The ultimate vertical scrolling shoot'em up! £19.95 
A vertically-scrolling shoot'em-up based on the arcade game of the same name. £24.95 

Next month, there will be the following categories: 

Board, Cards and Strategy games; Simulations; Sports Simulations; 

Adoentures - Graphics/Role Playing, and Adventures - Graphic and Text. 



Goel Computer Services 

The Complete Computer Shop 

45 Boston Road, Hanwell, London W7 3SH. Tel: 01-579 6133 

ACE 2 ™ £19.95 

AIRBALL £24.95 

All WORLD GAMES £19.99 

ARKANOID ..,„ „ £1 9.95 

ARMY MOVES £19.95 

BACKLASH M M .— .£19.95 

BAD CAT „ £19.99 


BLACK LAMP „ £19.99 

BLOOD VALLEY „.„ ......£19.99 






CHESSMASTER 2000 £24.95 



DEFLECTOR „ £1 9.99 

DEGAS EUTE £24.95 

DUNGEON MASTER ........£24.99 


C^A/ thHMIIIHHlHHH *»H«HtHMHtli Ihll Hi MM lh< L 1 9"^ 

EPYX EPICS „„ „..£29.95 

F-15 STRIKE EAGLE £24.95 


FLYING SHARK _ £19.95 


GATO £29.95 

GAUNTLET 2 £19.99 

GET DEXTER 2 £19.95 


£12.90 GUNSHIP „ £24.95 

£15.90 HUNT FOR RED 0CTC6ER £24.95 

£1295 IMPOSSIBLE MISSION 2 £19.99 

£1290 INDIANA JONES £19.99 

£12.90 JINXTER £24.95 

£12.90 KARATE KD 2 £24.95 

£1295 KING OF CHICAGO £29.99 

£15.95 KNtGHT ORG £19.95 

£1295 L'AFFAIRE ..£19.95 

£12.95 LEISURE SUrT LARRY £19.99 

£12.90 MACH3 £19.99 

£1290 METROPOLIS £19.99 


£12.90 MEOBIUS £24.99 

£12.90 MUSIC CONSTR SET _.. £24.95 

£17.50 NORTH STAR £19.99 

£15.90 OIDS £19.99 

£19.95 OUTRUN .. „_„..£19.99 

£12.95 PLATOON £19.95 

£17.90 POLICE QUEST £19.99 

£15.95 POWER PLAY £19.99 

£12.90 PREDATOR £19.99 

£12.90 PSION CHESS £24.95 

£19.90 QUANTUM FAINT .,£19.95 

£15.90 RANARAMA £19.95 

£32.50 ROADWARS ™ £1 9.99 

£12.90 ROCKET RANGER £29.95 

£12.95 SCRUPLES £19.95 

£19.90 SENTINEL £19.95 

£12.95 SHADOWGATE £29.95 

£12.90 SHANGHAI £24.95 

£15.90 SIDEWALK £19.95 

£15.90 SLAP FIGHT..,.. „ £19.95 £1290 

£15.90 SLAYGON £19.95 £1290 

£12.95 SOLOMONS KEY £19.95 £1290 

£12.95 SPACE ACE £19.95 £1290 

£15.90 SFACE QUEST 2 £19.99 £1295 

£15.90 SPrTFIRE 40 ..... £24.99 £1595 

£19.95 STAR TREK „ £19.95 £12.90 

£12.90 STAR WARS £19.95 £12.90 

£1290 STARGLIDER _.,...... £24 95 £1590 

£12.95 STRIKE FORCE HARRIER £24.95 £15.90 

£12.95 TANGLEWOOD £19.95 £1290 

£12.95 TAU CETI „..£19.95 £13 90 

£15.95 TERRAMEX £19.95 £12.90 

£15.95 TEST DRIVE £24.95 £17.50 

£18.00 TETRIS ...£19.95 £1290 

£1295 THE BARD'S TALE £24.95 £17.50 

£12.95 THE PAWN £24.95 £1590 

£12.95 TIME AND MAGIK £19.95 £1290 

£12.90 TONIC TILE £19.99 £12.95 

£1295 TOP GUN £19.95 £1290 

£12.95 TOURNAMENT OF DEATH £19.95 £12.90 

£12.95 TRAILBLAZER £24.95 £15.90 

£15.90 TRANTOR £19.99 £12.95 

£12.90 TRAUMA _...£19.95 £1290 

£12.90 TRIVIAL PURSUE £19.95 £12.90 

£12.95 U.M.S £24.95 £15.90 

£1990 VAMPIRES EMPIRE £19.99 £1295 

£12.90 WHERE TIME STOOD STILL £19.95 £12.90 

£12.90 WINTER OLYMPIAD £19.95 £12.90 

£1990 WIZARD WARZ £19.99 £1295 

£15.90 WIZBALL £19.95 £12.90 

£12.90 XENON., m £19.99 £12.95 


Access and Visa Hotline 01-579 6133 
for foreign orders please add £1.00 per disk. Please bring this advert to buy at these prices. 




Please send Cheque / Postal Order Access / Visa No & Expiry date to: 

Trybridge Ltd. 72 North Street Romford. Essex, RM 1 IDA. Please remember 

to state the make and model of your computer when ordering. 

P&P inc. UK on orders over £5. Under £5 and Europe add £1 per item. 

Elsewhere add £2 per item for Air Mail. 
Telephone Orders: 0708 76527 1 

Trybridge Software Distribution 

72 North St. Romford. Essex. RM1 IDA 

Access and Barclaycard welcome. Tel 0277 261908 


ACADEMY £13.50 

ART DIRECTOR .. £33.50 

AUTODUEL £17.50 

ARCTIC FOX £13.50 

ARMY MOVES £13.50 

ARKANOID £12.00 

BACKLASH £10.00 



BLACK LAMP £13.50 


BALLYHOO £10.00 



BARDS TALE £18.00 


CATCH 23 „ £12.00 



CRAFTON II £13.50 


CRAZY CARS £13.50 

CHESSMASTER 2000 £16.50 

DICK SPECIAL ..£16.50 




DIABLO £9.50 

DEJA VU £20.50 


ECO £11.00 



SCENARY DISK 7 OR 11 £15.50 





F15 STRIKE EAGLE £16.50 


PLANETFALL „ £10.00 

PREDATOR £13.50 

PROTECTOR ™ £6.50 


THE PAWN £16.50 

QUIZAN - £21 .50 



ROADWARS £13.50 

SENTINEL £13 50 

SKYRIDER £11 .00 


SKULLDIGGERY „...£10.00 

SLAYGON £16.50 

SKYFOX „ £1 0.00 


STRIP POKER 2 £7.00 


STAR GUDER £16.50 

STAR TRB< £1 2.95 

SDI £1 5.00 

STAR WARS £12.95 








1 f"\l fl TM^f MttllMII 1 tlllflflMK 






£16 50 

TRACKER £15.00 


TEE UP ffisn 









WORLD G*MES £12.00 

WAR ZONE £6.50 

■ ■ ■ ^^^h. nm. m ^^^b. i. m i. m m m i. m m m m i. ■ i. l m m m ■- ■ ■■ l m ■- i. m i. "i 



















. £16.50 



I. BALL £6.50 




JUMP JET £13.50 

JOE BLADE £6.50 

JINXTER £16.50 


KARATE £6.50 

KNIGHT ORG £13.50 







MOONMIST £10.00 


MACH 3 £1 3.50 


NORD & BERT £16.50 

NORTH STAR £1 2.95 


OIDS £13.50 

OUTRUN £13.50 

PLATOON . „ £1 3.50 




WIZBALL.. h*h £12-95 

XENON „ „ £16.50 

Just who do the reviewers 
think they are anyway? 

My name is Nicholas 
Clarkson and I have 
been involved with 
computers for eight 
years. I am getting 
married at the end of 
May to my fiance Yo- 
lande. So, when Hugh 
offered me this job I 
was happy to accept - 
in other words, I 
needed the money! My 
favourite computer 
games include: 

Boulderdash, Wizball 
and Sierra Adven- 
tures. In addition to 
computers I am also 
interested in Indian 
cuisine, patchwork quilting, junk food, knitting and listening to 
music - and if you believe that you'll believe anything. I often sit 
up until the early hours tapping frantically on my 1040 in order 
to get work in on time! Hopefully, the Gollner empire will soon 
supply us all with company cars, I'm fed up with sitting on cold, 
smokey buses. I'm rarely seen without my trusty walkman and 
like listening to the likes of New Order, The Smiths and Prefab 


I came into the world of 
computing and pub- 
lishing only last year, 
after previously being 
in the RAF where 1 
tried to learn to fly. 
Howver, my instruc- 
tors had other ideas! 
Anyway, after I left the 
RAF, I joined Gollner 
Publishing as Assis- 
tant Editor and got 
thrown in at the deep 
end of the publishing 
world. I pursue an ac- 
tive lifestyle as a mat- 
ter of course, and 
amongst skate- 

boarding (down at 
Southsea Skatepark and also around Chichester on company 
business!), unicycling and windsurfing, I, along with Jason 
Spiller, play as a duo in local pubs with myself providing rhythm 
on drums. In my spare time, I actually manage to fit in a fairly 
hectic day at the office! I enjoy playing most games but, naturally, 
flight simulations are my favourite, with Gunship keeping me 
awake most evenings. Along with the majority of the ST Action 
team, I share a fascination for fast cars and am currently working 
on a 2.5 litre V6 Cortina Mk II Pro-Street custom car with my 
brother. As for computers, I have used Apricots (didn't like the 
rolling ball), PCs (can't stand a non-GEM environment for a non- 
buff such as myself), Macs (nice piece of kit and very much a 
plug-in-and-go machine, but tacky small screen ) and, of course, 
STs (with which I feel totally at ease). 


At the age of fourteen, 
Samantha Snelling 
from form 3B was con- 
siderably more appeal- 
ing than the school's 
computer room. With 
its keyboard encrusted 
with crumbs from 
lunchtime snacks and 
half a dozen eager 
boffins jostling for posi- 
tion at the controls, the 
lone Commodore Pet 
was, at first, of little in- 
terest to this adoles- 
cent. However, it was 
here that I took refuge 
during wet lunchtimes 
and, in time, inadver- 
tently developed an interest in computing. I gratefully accepted a 
Sinclair ZX81 and, like many others, toiled with its limitations. I 
reckon that anyone who started with a ZX81 and is still interested 
in computers can be classed as a real enthusiast. After leaving 
higher education, my career in computers began in a retail 
software environment, which spanned from Horace and the 
Spiders to Commando. Over those three years, I must have played 
hundreds of games and so becoming an entertainment software 
critic was a natural progression. My other interests are in music 
and 1 class myself as a long-term student of the guitar. 


Andy Mitchell, known to 
all as 'Mitch', is the resi- 
dent Dungeon Master of 
the 'Dungeon and Disk 
Drive* column in our 
sister magazine, ST 
World. Born in Perth, 
Scotland, Mitch now 
lives in Larkfield, Kent 
where his 'day job' is 
that of a Computer Sys- 
tems Manager for a 
large electronic com- 
pany. Although he 
admits to being 'over 
21' he is a registered 
adventure addict and 
arcade game freak. His 
hobbies include draw- 
ing cartoons, reading science fiction, wrestling with his large, 
hairy, bearded collie dog and avoiding gardening. Having been 
one of the first owners of a BBC Micro, he fell in love with 
adventures early and has been a regular contributor to magazines, 
such as, the Beebug, Micro Adventurer, ST World and the DEC 
User. Although his first love is adventure games, he has also seen 
the dawn come up more than once whilst having 'one last go' at 
saving the Earth from the Invaders! 

In addition to 'playing games' Mitch also spends his time 
drawing with the Degas Elite art package which he believes is 
possibly the best piece of software available on the Atari ST. After 
spending so many years playing adventures, he has become 
convinced that he has an invisible, 8 foot dragon as a personal 
friend - Mitch's friends are very worried about him! 


520 STFM inc Mouse" inc. 10 free discs „ £299.95 

1040 STF" £429.00 

1040 STF with SM125 mono monitor* £549.00 

Mega ST2 with mono monitor" „ £869.00 

Atari SLM804 laser printer „ K £1199.00 

Atari SM125 mono monitor , — H „ £134.00 

Atari SC1224 colour monitor „.. — „ £349.00 

Atari SH205 hard disk, new style ~ £539.00 

Atari DTP system 1 - includes Mega ST2, Mono Monitor 

SLM804 laser printer, Fleet Street Publisher & on site maintenance £2059.00 

Cumana CSA354 1 meg drive £129.95 

Cumana CDA358 2 meg (dual drive) £229.00 

Pace Linnet Modem Pack inc. cable * software £179.00 

Phillips CMB833 colour monitor c/w ST lead ............. £279.00 

Phillips CM8852 as above, higher resolution £299.00 



Data Manager £37.95 

SwiltCalc £37.95 

Data Manager & Switt Calc £59.95 

Partner ST £37.95 

Desk Top Publisher £74.95 

Word Writer £59.95 

Desk Top Publisher ♦ WordWnler... .£114.95 


Cyber Studio (CAD 20) £67.95 

Cyber Conlrol (animator) £44.95 

Cyber Painl m .m*m „ £54.95 

CAD 3D 10 £18.95 


Design Discs „ £22.95 

Genesis molecular modeller £22.95 

Stereoiek glasses £145.00 

GIST (sound ediloi). „,« £26.25 

Base Two £44.95 

COLR (sprite editor) £18.95 


Flight Simulator II £37.45 

F - 15 Strike Eagle „„ .£16.95 

Gunship £16.95 

Silent Service £16.95 

Book Keeper 


Accountant Plus 


GFA Basic £37.95 

GFA Compiler — .£37.95 

GFADraH £74.95 

GFA Vector £25.95 

First Word Plus £59.95 

GSTC Compiler £15.95 

Macro Assembler .-. £15.95 

1st Mail (lor 1st Word only) £15.95 


Fleet Street Publisher EB6.25 

Easy Draw 2 £44.95 

Fast Basic ROM . H £69.95 

Fast Basic Oisk £37.95 

Mark Williams C £99.95 

Superbase Personal........ £79.95 

Degas Elite M £19.95 

Super Conductor £37.50 

PC Ditto „ £69.95 

logislix „ £89.95 

Word Perfect V4.1 £149.95 

FTL Modula-2..,.., , ,-..£55.95 


Signs and Banners £8.95 

Greetings Cards MM £8.95 

Calendars & Stationary £8.95 

Art Library 1 (clip aril £8.95 

Art Library 2 (clip art},..,. £8.95 


HOTLINE 051-691 2008 
S □ E9 » A ' 



MjilOnJc poets 1U0 cfTcrtdt^ir pcr^orut 

ctlltra producing thii *drtrt<wm*nl 

PoilgiT- Ink rralfoail tccepttd 

HOT Poilblftk Poll : hequ i' 



TELEPHONE (0625) 25228 


BLACK LAMP £15.95 

CRAZY CARS £15.95 




GUNSHIP £19.95 

POOL £8.95 

PREDATOR £15.95 

OIDS £15.95 

SKYRIDER £11.95 

STAR TREK £15.95 

STAR WARS £15.95 

TAUCETI £15.95 

TEST DRIVE £19.95 

TETRIS £15.95 

WIZBALL £15.95 






ACCOUNT: 664 6638 


























IMPACT „™. „ 


S.D.I ,..„.,..,..,.„ 

« T -TT -ft T*t T tf T H T \+ 

















































































































GUNSHIP , £24.95 


GOLDRUNNER 1 OR 2 £24.95 


ST SOCCER £24.95 






TRANTOR £19.95 

SLAP FIGHT £19.95 

ROCKFORD £19.95 

CJIUO Wm>HH IH H 1 t H t M l H l HW W W * H« W > fET8l 8 3 


ACE 2 £19.95 



ECO £19.95 

TERRORMEX .. £19.95 


TONIC TIE £19.95 



SKY RIDER £14.95 


SCRUPLES £19 95 

MIDI MAZE £34.95 




JIN)CTER £24.95 

THE PAWN £24.95 


NOT A FENNY MORE „...£19.95 


KNIGHT ORC £24.95 

DEJA VU £24.95 

AWJALS OF ROME.™™ £24.95 

ZORK (12 OR 3) £29.99 












































LEATHER GODDESS £29.99 £19.99 

PLANETFALL £29.99 £19.99 

LURKING HORROR £29.99 £19.99 

STATIONFALL £29.99 £19.99 


FLEET STREET PUBLISHER ...£115.00 £79.95 

PC DITTO (1040 ONLY) £8995 £59.95 

SUPERBASE « £9995 £69.95 

PROTEXT , £79.95 £49.95 

WORD PERFECT £228.85 £139.95 

PASCAL (METACOMCO) £99.95 £59.95 

LATTICE C (METACOMCO) £99.95 £69.95 

MAJLSHOT PLUS , -....,.£49.95 £34.95 

K-GRAPH 2 £79.95 £49 95 

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Surprisingly, the title of 

this game was not 

chosen at random from 

an A to Z of ailments, it 

is, in fact, a play on the 

word 'Android*. 

A race of evil rulers called the Biocretes 
have created some android slaves, which 
they shamelessly abuse and exploit. While 
these '01DS' toil in a filthy and dangerous 
environment, those heartless Biocretes live 
lives of gluttony and greed - smart people! 
However, as a member of a compassionate 
race, you must free the OIDS from their 
enforced slavery, by Joining an intergalactic 
organization called 'SAVEOIDS'. Your 
mission is to pilot a V-Wing fighter which, 
in appearance and mannerisms, has a 
striking resemblance to the craft in another 
game with 'OIDS' in the title, 'Asteroids'. 

You are presented with a list of 
planets which contain varying levels of 
danger and hazards, ranging from the 
relatively peaceful planet, THovoids', to the 
impossible realms of Gravodromeda. It is 
advised that you concentrate your first 
mercy mission on Movoids. Briefly, the 
screen displays a cockpit view as you 
journey through a swirling of stars until you 
are confronted by a barren planet. Immedi- 
ately, the screen changes to show a strange 
and mountainous moonscape and a large 

mothership floats down from the top of the 
screen and jettisons the small V-Wing 
fighter into space. The V-Wing is equipped 
with a limitless supply of missiles and a 
limited quota of devastating Novabombs, 
which make light work of Biocrete destruc- 
tion. The craft relies on rear-engine thrust 

PHONE: 01-377 4645 
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1ST DAY SCORE : 57217 

for its direction and manoeuvrability and, 
by manipulating the joystick to the left and 
right, you can rotate the Slapfighter 360 
degrees, while pushing the joystick 
forwards activates the thrust. Because you 
only have forward thrust, halting its forward 
momentum requires spinning the craft in 
exactly the opposite direction and then 
applying thrust. However, the tendency is 
to attempt to steer the craft by pulling back 

the joystick which 
unnecessarily activates 
and exhausts a protective 

As you manoeuvre 
the craft near the edge of 
the screen, it scrolls 
horizontally across a 
craggy and mountainous 
terrain. As described, most 
of the controls are oper- 
ated with the joystick, with 
the exception of the 
spacebar which, when 
pressed, recharges that 
protective shield. However, 

while you are 

recharging the 

shield the game continues an3 if you are 
forced to use the shield while you are 
recharging, the recharge cycle is automa- 
tically aborted. 

OIDS is an unusual combination of 
three classic arcade games: the 
thrust steering technique from As- 
tertoids, the terrain from Guardian 
and the evacuation of stranded 
beings from Choplifter. Not only is 
this a super arcade shoot'em-up, 
the rescue and evacuation of the 
OIDS is a constructive contrast to 
the mindless destruction of the 
planet surface, which acts as a 
great incentive to persevere with 
the game. Combine this with the 
factthatyou never quite master the 
thrust and velocity steering tech- 
nique, and you have all the neces- 
sary requirements for a game 
which guarantees long-term inter- 
est - the screen designer is just an 
added bonus! 

Oids - a mixture ol many arcade games, including Choplifter and Asteroids 

Maintaining the level of these shields is 
vitally important, although recharging takes 
its toll on the fuel levels. The shield protects 
you from enemy fire as well as collisions 
with the terrain. However, enemy fire is the 
main cause of shield depletion, although a 
collision with an enemy craft whose 
protective shield is also activated results in 
almost immediate destruction. Fuel is your 
most precious commodity and constant 
thrust and shield regeneration takes its toll 
on your resources. Fuel replenishment 
relies on your success at picking up all of 
the stranded OIDS on the planet or, during 
the course of the mission, landing near a 
Biocrete fuel station which is represented 
by a hexagonal pod. You must land within 
reach of the fuel pipe which protrudes from 
the side of the fuel station and watch the 
fuel gauge rise. 

Instrumentation comprises a status 
display, your current score, a colour-coded 
fuel indicator and shield-charge gauge. 
Additionally, little robotic figures signify 
how many evacuees you have on board. 
Before you can rescue the OIDS, you must 
destroy the factories in which they are 
working. However, care must be taken 
because if you use more force than is 
necessary, it is possible to inadvertently 
destroy the occupants of the factory. The 
Oids run out of the factory remains and 
wave, which signifies that you must find the 


Close-up: your craft lands to collect several waving Olds 

Your ship travelling over the alien territory 

nearest piece of flat land, rotate the craft so 
that the nose is facing upwards and 
carefully control the landing. The OIDS 
clamber on board and once the display 
indicates that you are carrying eight OIDS, 
you must relocate the position of the 
mothership and dock. 

The planet Novoid presents little in 
the way of opposition, and this enables you 
to master the steering of the craft. However, 
the next five planets introduce increasing 
amounts of difficulty, with the introduction 
of enemy vessels and rocket launchers. The 
planet Intermedix introduces heat-seeking 
missiles, while the welcoming world of 
Cosmoids contains squadrons of Hell Jets 
with the manoeuvrability of Harrier Jump- 
jets. However, the ultimate challenge is the 
planet Gravodromeda which, like its name 
suggests, contains a powerful gravity that 
constantly threatens to drag the V-Wing to 
the ground. 

Once you have conquered all of the 
planetoids and have rescued the OIDS, 
returning to the option screen and selecting 
'Editor Menu' places you in the built-in 
screen designer. The edit screen is almost 
identical to the game screen, with addi- 
tional edit functions and controls. With the 
Shift and Control keys, you can select a 
variety of terrain and mountain shapes or 
Biocrete bases and place them on screen. 
Pressing the up and down cursor keys 

displays the selection of mountain shapes 
at your disposal, while the right and left 
arrow keys toggle the Biocrete buildings. 
After making your selection, tapping the 
'Insert' button places the piece of terrain or 
building on screen. There are two parts to 
the mountain ranges: bases and peaks, 
which must be placed in vertical columns 

At first glance it would be quite easy 
to dismiss Oids as an overpriced 
space rescue game. In many re- 
spects it looks like a 'Choptifter'- 
type clone, your task being to de- 
stroy various laser emplacements 
and to rescue some of your fellow 
countrymen from the evil clutches 
of their captors. It is not until you get 
(to the game that you begin to ap- 
preciate its beauty. The hidden ex- 
tras, such as. Hell Jets, Heat-Seek- 
ers and Burst Orbs all help give the 
game a solid feel. Included within 
the program is an Oids construction 
kit. This final, easy-to-use feature 
gives the game a personal touch 
and really completes the package. 
Oids will be a big hit with many 
people, I'm already a fan! 


on the screen, comprising no more than one 
base and two peaks. If you try and place 
more than this in one column, one of the 
shapes which you have already positioned 
is automatically erased from the screen. 
Pressing 'F' displays a map of the entire 
planetoid, pinpointing the re-fuelling bases 
and factories and, after you have created 
your planetoid, tapping the 'P' key allows 
you to play your creation. Finally, ensuring 
that you have saved the original planetoid 
on the Library File, you can save your 
planetoid to a galaxy on the game disk. 


A cross between Choptifler, Space- 
port and Scramble, but it still 
makes a refreshing change from the 
current stock of ST games. It con- 
tains the classic elements of flying a 
spaceship and shooting at things, 
but having the task of finding and 
rescuing the Oids turns this into 
less of a mindless occupation. The 
ground-based hazards, gravity 
pods and teleport gates make for 
entertaining flying, but the game 
still manages to be easy to play for 
long periods without becoming mo- 
notonous. The scenery would be 
much better filled-in, but this could 
have made the game smaller and 
less extensive. Oids is a compelling 
game which has a definite purpose 
to its scenario. It must be played at 
quite a leisurely pace and is not for 
the quick-moving 'alien onslaught' 







1 040ST 

Editing a galaxy using the built-in construction set 

Be prepared to drool! 
After waiting for what 
seems like an eternity, 

Dungeon Master has 

Stand before the large iron gates to the 
dungeon, press the ruby button set in 
the old stone wall, and feel your eyes 
widen as the rusty doors swing open to 
reveal the dark corridor beyond. Take 
a deep breath, select 'Forward' with 
the pointer and the grey stone blocks 
of the corridor walls will move for- 
wards. Here in the glow of your 
flickering torch you must make the 
first of the many decisions that will 
determine whether you will ever leave 
this place. Choose wrongly and you 
will spend eternity sealed within a 
magical mirror in the dark Hall of the 

In his desire to gain the Power 
Crystal, the Grey Lord took one 
chance too many and unleashed the 
power of Chaos in his dungeon. Only 
by recovering the Firestaff from the 
dungeon's depths can anyone hope to 
fight the freed evil force. Many cham- 
pions accepted the challenge, per- 
ished, and were sealed in mirror tombs 
within the dungeon. As the Grey Lord's 
apprentice you are now given the 
opportunity to enter the dungeon and 
resurrect four of the champions to 
form a fighting force in one fast 

You will be able to view each of 


the mirrors in the hall and examine the 
skills and powers of the heroes. They 
include an assembly of male and 
female fighters, magicians, healers 
etc. Having selected your party you 
may form them into the order of battle 
with the strongest in the lead. Before 
setting off into the darker recesses of 
the passageways you will need to find 
provisions and a torch. Luckily, there 
appears to have been a number of 
overloaded, greengrocery carts 
trundling around the area, as a quick 
search will find the odd apple and corn 
cob lying in the corners. There is also 
a full waterskin to be found which 
should help keep your mouth wet 
enough to whistle in the dark! 

With a torch to light your way, 
you may now descend the first stair- 
way into the more deadly area of the 
labyrinth. From here on in, you must 
pay close attention to detail as each 
wall and alcove can conceal traps and 
secret doors. Old portcullis gates may 
be raised if you press the correct 
button. Wooden doors will creak open 
if you can find and insert the correct 
key, and traps may be avoided if you 
avoid stepping on that slightly raised 

As the torch burns down, the 
whole scene will gradually darken so 
you had better have someone along 
with you who is carrying a spare or 
someone who knows a quick-fire spell. 
As well as the scattered food, you had 
better stumble over some weapons 
pretty quickly as there are all kinds of 
nasties who will charge at you from 
the dark and make mincemeat out of 
your unarmed warriors. Weapons 
range from the usual hardware of 
mayhem to the more subtle spell 
scrolls which will singe the eyeballs of 
anyone who dares look sideways at 
you. Should any of your gallant band 
end up being smashed to a pile of 
blood and bones, all is not lost. By 
collecting the bones you may return 
with them to a magic shrine and have 
the poor soul resurrected - assuming 
you have sufficient magic skills. 

All commands may be given via 
the mouse pointer. Movement in the 
game is achieved by selecting forward 
and sideways arrow icons. You may 
view the status screen for any one of 
the companions and this will create a 
graphic window displaying his/her 
clothes, weapons and charts of 

Dungeon Master is set amidst a 
la by rin th ofs ton e- waited passages, 
and takes on the appearance of a 
fantasy rote-playing game. The 
player must enter the chambers 
and collect a party of four "Champi- 
ons". Guiding the party through the 
maze, the player will encounter 
many foes and puzzles at every 
turn. Unlike the Ultima range, 
Dungeon Master is icon driven. This 
process makes the game very ac- 
cessible and I found it a joy to play. 
The game's graphics are very well 
implemented and the sound, too, 
although a tittiesparse, is of a pleas- 
ing quality. Overall, the game will 
provide a long-lasting challenge to 
the most ardent fantasy-playing 
freak; I think it also provides a good 
introduction to a would-be role- 


physical condition. Creation of spells 
is again carried out by selecting 
strange symbols from a window, whilst 
ensuring you also hold any required 
magical item. The various traps, doors 
and monsters found in the dungeon 
are displayed in beautiful, animated 
detail within the main window. When- 
ever you are engaged in battle, the 
'bad guy' is shown before you swing- 
ing weapons and claws in your direc- 
tion. As you direct the weapons of 
your companions there are various 
sound effects to reflect the hack and 
slash of the battle. You may also throw 
items down the corridors and this is 
graphically shown in the main window. 
Throwing a rock at a door will show 
the stone launched through the air and 
bouncing off the woodwork with a 
satisfying 'clunk'. 

The game is supplied on a 
single disk and is accompanied with a 
44-page booklet. The booklet includes 
an 18-page introductory story explain- 
ing exactly how we managed to get 
ourselves into this fine mess, but it 
omits to tell us how to get out! The 
remainder of the book explains the 
game controls and the meaning of the 
strange magic symbols used in spell 

The majority of the 3D corridors 
are identically drawn and this means 
mapping is essential if you are ever to 
retrace your steps. Whilst running 
back through the corridors carrying 
the bones of a dead companion, 
hoping to find the Alter of Rebirth 
before your guttering torch goes out, 
you'll wish you had drawn a better 
map on the way in! There are many 

KEYBOARD 1 1 1 X l\ 

JOYSTICK 1 1 1 X 1 1 

MOI IfiF 1 • 1 1 1 1 

noimiR • II 1 1 

MONO 1 1 X 1 1 

520ST • 1 1 1 1 

1040ST * I 1 

PHONE: 01-377 4645 
PRICE: £24.99 













I first saw a demo of this game twelve months ago whilst wandering through 
the hi-tech stores in London's West End. Mirrorsoft repeatedly promised that 
they would be marketing the game in the near future, but nothing eoer seemed 
to bring its release date any closer. I knew that a game which combined 
adventure, combat and brilliant graphics was just what the ST needed. For too 
long we have had to accept revamped eight-bit games which used none of the 
ST's potential and consequently the results were always less than exciting. 
Arcade game players could not understand why anyone would want to play a 
boring text-only game and therefore avoided 'hack and slash' games like the 
plague. Dungeon Master is sure to be a game which will help change all this. 
There is the chore of mapping to be carried out and the booklet does warn 
that, even with a map, things can get confusing. In the relatively short time I 
have spent playing the game, I did find the spell-casting sequence a little mind 
boggling. Dungeon and Dragon fans seem to delight in confusing outsiders by 
making the magic aspect as bewildering as possible, so I have achieved little 
success in this aspect. However, I have no doubt that a little confusion is a good 
thing as it gives the player something to puzzle out and finally conquer. Buy this 
game today and 'wind up' a Spectrum owner. 

small details to help you identify a 
particular corridor, such as, a patch of 
green slime on the floor or some wall- 
mounted manacles, but the place is so 
large that things get very confusing. 

The combination of the superb graph- 
ics, sound effects and the ease of 
game control have produced a very 
strong game which will be a feast for 
ST users. 'SMI 



I first piloted Anco 's 
Jump Jet two years ago 

on various eight-bit 
machines and, as far as 

I can ascertain, the 

version which is now 

available for the ST has 

changed very little. 

At the time of its release, there were a 
number of thorough and realistic aircraft 
simulations on the market, which empha- 
sized the fact that Jump Jet leans further 
towards arcade entertainment than realistic 
simulation. The absence of a long-winded 
preparation section and a fat interactive 
operations manual, is the first indication 
that this is an unpretentious arcade game 
rather than a simulation. The first screen 
displays a picture of the Jump Jet and a 
menu containing four skill levels signified 
by progressive R.A.F. officer ranks. Each 
level introduces different aspects of flight 
and a decrease in the aircraft's tolerance to 

The Harrier lakes Otl 

Jump Jet is the common name for a 
fixed-wing aircraft which does not require a 
runway to take off or land. Vertical take-off 
relies on the ability to alter the angle of the 
jet nozzles and, once the nozzles are 
pointing downwards, a massive increase in 
thrust lifts the aircraft off the ground. 
Pulling back on the control-column causes 
the nose of the aircraft to tip up, which 
eventually results in reverse flight. To 
accelerate from the vertical lift, the nozzles 
are set at an angle of 45 degrees and, once 
airspeed has reached 180 knots, the jet 
nozzles can be returned to the normal 
horizontal position. In conjunction with the 
manual, an odd interpretation of this unique 
flight theory and take-off procedure is 
covered in 'Level 1\ 

Selecting the 'Practice' level reveals 
a cockpit instrumentation layout and, 
through the cockpit windshield, an over- 
head view of the Jump Jet on the aircraft 
carrier. A 'Wing-tip' icon on the instrumen- 
tation panel shows the position of the flaps, 
which can be moved up and down by 
pressing the 'F' key. After ensuring that the 
flaps are down for take-off, selecting the '3' 
key activates vertical thrust. The 'plus' and 
'minus' keys increase and decrease the 
power of the thrust and the level is shown 
on a sliding power gauge. Full power is 
needed to achieve take-off and, once 
airborne, you must reduce power to 75 per 
cent in order to maintain the height and 
prepare for horizontal movement. 

Successfully completing this brief 
flight lesson enables you to return to the 
option-screen to select one of the missions. 
The game-screen returns and, remember- 
ing the take-off procedure, you can take off 
and hover at around fifty feet. Immediately, 
the screen changes to show a side view of 
the aircraft carrier and the Jump Jet 
hovering above it. Once you have climbed 
to over 200 feet, the screen alters again to 
show the split-screen display of the sea and 
sky environment through the cockpit 
windshield. Finally, you are actually inside 
the cockpit and, as soon as the Airspeed 
gauge indicates 180 knots, tapping key '4' 
activates forward thrust. Before you exceed 
300 knots, the flaps and undercarriage 
must be raised by pressing the *F' and '(J' 

it is acknowledged that the joystick 
is an excellent substitute for an aircraft's 
control-column. However, by incorporating 
the directional controls within the mouse, 
Anco have foolishly disregarded the 
opportunity of injecting some realism into 
Jump Jet. Additionally, with the exception 
of the more traditional and recognizable 
aircraft dials, the instrumentation is 
imaginative rather than authentic. The 
instrument panel at the bottom of the 









PHONE: 0322-92513 
PRICE: £14.95 


SOUND :30% 



OVERALL :42.3% 


The control pane) shows the novel directional controls thai make Ihe Harner so special 


The Harrier Jump Jel prepares lor landing on Ihe carrier 

screen houses a Sweep Radar, a Heading 
and Pitch Roll indicator and a weapons 
inventory. If you attempt a manoeuvre 
contrary to procedure or are in danger of 
crashing, a red light flashes to warn you of 
your mistake and, as you progress up the 
ranks, you are allowed less warnings before 
the mission and game are aborted. In 
addition to the aircraft's decreasing 
tolerance towards your mistakes, each 
succeeding level contains more bad 
weather and rough seas and a greater 
number of enemy aircraft and missile 

Flying over 5000 feet exposes your 
aircraft to enemy radar and so it is impor- 
tant to keep a constant watch on the 
Altimeter. Your own radar indicates enemy 
aircraft within a five-mile radius and, in 
preparation for a confrontation, pressing 
the 'M' key activates 'Attack' mode. With 
the missile tubes armed and the Weaponry 
Sights fixed on the cockpit windshield, the 
solid-graphic enemy aircraft emerges on 
the horizon - you have no option but to 
engage your foe. The sights are not 

Oh no, not another flight simula- 
tion! Anco's Jump Jet puts you in 
control of a Naval Harrier fighter. In 
some ways I found this easier to 
play than others I haue attempted. 
For instance, getting off the ground 
presented no difficulties due to the 
vertical takeoff characteristics. But 
once in the air I found control (via 
the mouse) quite tricky with a ten- 
dency for the aircraft toover-react to 
my movements. I only really man- 
aged to play level 1, and had great 
difficulty landing and refuelling. 
Later levels promised adverse 
weather conditions and enemy en- 
counters to add to the game's over- 
all interest. I, for one, was notoverly 
impressed with Jump Jet, and 
could, therefore, only recommend it 
to those who enjoy their simulated 


separate from the directional controls and 
so you have to manoeuvre the aircraft itself 
to bring the enemy into the sights. Pressing 
the '!_' key locks the missile on to the target 
and a 'Lock On' sign illuminates on the 
Message Bar to confirm. As the enemy 
aircraft draws near, clicking the right-hand 
button dispatches the missile and, if the 
target is destroyed, the aircraft bursts into 
flames and an unnecessary message lights 
up to confirm your success. 

Missile attacks are frequent in the 
higher rank levels and because of their size 
and speed, the radar fails to pick them up. 
Fortunately however, your trusty and 
unlikely message bar warns you of the 
approaching missile and gives the distance 
and bearing. Turning the aircraft to face the 
missile, you must judge the distance and 
anticipate its arrival. Attempting to 
intercept the missile with your own 
weaponry is futile, especially when you 
consider the cumbersome controls. 
Therefore, pressing the 'C key releases a 
decoy material called Chaff, which lasts for 
about five seconds. If you have anticipated 

When you consider the quality of 
the aircraft simulations which are 
available for the ST, Anco could not 
have chosen a worse time to release 
Jump Jet. Yet again, it would ap- 
pear that their airborne folly has 
failed to be accepted as a serious 
simulation. The outside aircraft 
views during the take-off and land- 
ing scenes fail to present an ac- 
ceptably realistic simulation. Addi- 
tionally, although the mouse-con- 
trols leave one hand free to operate 
the keyboard functions, theydonot 
even remotely resemble realistic 
aircraft controls, let atone emulate 
them. Microprose effectively dis- 
guised the jerky scrolling in F15 
Strike Eagle with perspective lines 
drawn across the terrain, which 
also enhanced the feeling of move- 
ment and speed. In Jump Jet, 
however, without the Airspeed 
Indicator and the occasional cloud, 
it would be difficult to tell whether 
you were actually moving or just 


the arrival of the missile correctly, it will 
home in on the Chaff, allowing you to alter 
your direction. In the higher levels, the 
enemy aircraft are also equipped with Chaff, 
which affects your weaponry. 

Combat and pursuit reduces your 
fuel levels considerably and so you must 
relocate the position of your aircraft carrier 
on the radar. The ship is visible within five 
miles and, as you approach, you must drop 
below 200 feet and steadily reduce your 
speed. As your airspeed drops below 20 
knots and you are within 30 feet of the 
landing pad, you are again presented with 
the view from outside the aircraft. Finally, 
ensuring that the jet is over the landing pad, 
pressing the 'minus' key reduces the thrust 
which brings the Jump Jet down to land. 


The out-ol-cockpit display is far Irom stunning as a lew pathetic clouds stagger past 



The crowd roar, the 
contestants enter the 
arena. Ding, ding, sec- 
onds out its Tynesofts 

boxing simulation. 

Take two martial arts characters, draw 

a few pagodas and Tibetan mountains 

in the background, and you have an 

unarmed combat 

game in which the 

fighters display 

relatively realistic 


However, put two 

wrestlers or boxers 

in a ring and they 

develop large, 

cartoon-like bodies 

and lose control of 

their limbs. Both 

big Frank Bruno 

and Barry 

McGuigan have 

endorsed boxing 

games for the 

eight-bit market, 

which must have 

caused them some 



Seconds Out is the 

first boxing game 

for the ST and, like 

Bruno's boxing 

game, it displays 

an end-on view of the boxers rather 

than the traditional side view, adopted 

in the majority of unarmed combat 


To win the coveted and fiercely 
contended WB title, you must elimi- 
nate five international boxers. The first 
contender comes from Millwall, 
England. Standing five feet six inches 
tall and weighing in at a massive 120 
pounds, the mighty Joe Weed is, as 

his name subtly suggests, the weakest 
contender in the game. The game 
screen is dominated by a boxing ring 
with your comical and cartoon-like 
opponent facing towards you. In 
Bruno's boxing game, the opposing 
fighter was obscured by the boxer 
under your control and Tynesoft have 
attempted to rectify this by creating a 
see-through, wire-frame boxer. 
However, both sets of boxing gloves 
are red and, when the boxers are 

'.■.'.':. .'. • • ■ , :li 

i • ni'i'it f * if • I 



PHONE: 091-414 4611 

PRICE: £19.95 




: 24% 


: 60% 


; 49% 


: 54% 


; 2500 

Fist to fist combat - the sprites are both big 
and colourful 

Blisters and perhaps a strained 
joystick are guaranteed in Sec- 
onds Out, enjoyment and long- 
term interest are not! This is not a 
game of strategy, technique or 
tactics; it is a long and drawn-out 
slugging match. The controls are 
more distinct than in other boxing 
games I have played, but with 
only two types of punches and de- 
fensiue mooes, there is little oari- 
ety. Additionally, the wire-frame 
boxer is a pointless exercise, as 
the side view, which is adopted in 
the majority of unarmed combat 
games, is far more effective. The 
game's strength is Its so-called 
'amusing', cartoon-like oppo- 
nents which, in my opinion, fail to 
enhance the appeal of the game. It 
would appear that while martial 
arts Is an excellent subject for 
computer simulation, boxing ap- 
pears to be a hopeless case. 

aligned, it is difficult to tell which 
gloves belong to whom. Above the 
ring, a status display houses an energy 
gauge that decreases when your boxer 
sustains a blow and increases as he 
gets the better of the opposition. 
Additionally, a glove-shaped 'KO' 
gauge pulsates to indicate when your 
opponent is exhausted and, with a 
right hook, you can knock him out. 
This runs in conjunction with a Knock- 
out meter, which rises every time your 

boxer's glove 
makes contact 
with your 
opponent's body 
and decreases 
when you sustain a 
hit. The right hook 
is the only punch 
that can cause a 
knockout in this 

Joe Weed 
shuffles patheti- 
cally from one side 
of the ring to the 
other and, in order 
to swiftly eliminate 
this embarrassing 
spectacle and 
move on to the 
more serious 
contenders, you 
must move your 
boxer in reach of 
the retreating Mr 
Weed by pulling 
the joystick to the 
left or right. Through your wire-frame 
fighter, you can watch the position of 
your opponent's gloves and, as he 
puts his guard down, pushing the 
joystick forwards brings your guard 
up. Then, with left and right joystick 
manipulation, you can hit the oppo- 
nent alternately with both fists. Natu- 
rally, your opponent brings his gloves 
up to protect himself and so pulling 
the joystick backwards brings your 
gloves down to his torso. Quickly, 
before he can benefit from your 
dropped guard, you must press the 







1 040ST 




The player Is shown In outline form, and his opponent faces you 

Your first opponent Is Joe Weed and he's literally a push overl 

firebutton again and continue the 
assault with body punches. 

Eliminating Joe Weed promotes 
you to the next fight, which is against 
the Jamaican contender, 
Bonecruncher Jones. Bonecruncher is 
described as a slow but powerful 

puncher and so this bout tests 

your resolve and endurance, as 
well as the strength of your 
joystick! Bonecruncher rarely lets 
his guard down and so this bout 
is a tiresome and unenjoyable 
slugging match. Your only 
chance of speeding up the 
process is to wait for the KO 
meter to pulsate and try for that 
right hook. The hook is a slow 
and cumbersome move and, if 
the opponent manages to hit you 
while your guard is down, his 
energy meter begins to increase 
again and you lose that hard- 
earned advantage. Between each 
round, your boxer returns to his 
corner and, with the joystick, you 
can control the trainer to tend to 
him with water and smelling salts. 
Confusingly, while the boxer is sitting 
in his corner, his wire-frame body is 

"Well 'arry, Seconds Out is truly a 
steady contender, know what I 
mean?" I, being a keen follower of 
goings-on in the ring, was quite 
excited when Tynesoft's latest re- 
lease stepped Into the office. I 
found the game fun to play, the 
graphics are clear and welt 
drawn. I was particularly im- 
pressed with the features on the 
opponent's faces - Bonecrusher 
Jones really did look surprised 
when he lost on points. The game 
eases you into your challenge by 
presenting the boxers in their 
orderof skill. Not all of the fighters 
play fair - would someone tell 
Hammerhead Hagman that 
headbutting is not in the WBA 
rules? Seconds Out is a well-Im- 
plemented game, but don't think 
it 's all action without the pain, my 
joystick hand was throbbing by 
the time I was finally decked. Buy 

filled in with solid graphics! 

From Scotland, Mike 'Hammer- 
head* Hagman is an unlikely candidate 
for the World Boxing title. Bearded and 
bespectacled, this Glaswegian more 
resembles a chemistry teacher than a 
boxer. However, his forte is the head- 

butt and, periodically, he brings his 
head forward in an attempt to crack 
skulls with your fighter. Of course, this 
is against WBA regulations, but as 
there is no referee in the ring to 
officiate, anything goes! If you avoid 

those skull-numbing head-butts, this 
bout can be easily won on points. With 
the WB title in sight, the fast and 
powerful American, John J. Ronco, 
enters the ring and, immediately, you 
are forced to go on the defensive. 
Because a hit only registers if it makes 
contact with your boxer's body, 
you must guard and block with 
the gloves to maintain your 
energy level. Again, it is unlikely 
that you will be able to KO this 
opponent and so this bout also 
lacks variety. 

Usually, when a Russian 
character is included in a game of 
this sort, he is called something 
like 'Ivan the Terrible' or 'Vlad the 
Destroyer'. Tynesoft, however, 
have named their undefeated 
Russian champion Mick 'Masher' 
Mallone - presumably he is of 
Irish descent. The champion 
enters the ring and, because you 
are weakened from the four 
previous bouts, Tynesoft have 
ensured that he remains un- 
beaten. However inapt his name, your 
time in the ring is brief and frustrating, 
and with weary wrists and a dwindling 
interest for the game, you must return 
to the beginning and fight each of the 
contenders all over again. 

Before the fight you get a chance to see who you'll be bashing 



The release of a new 

Infocom adventure is 

always a cause for 

celebration amongst 

adoenture fans. The 

famous ZORK trilogy of 

games was set in the 

Great Underground 

Empire of Lord Dimwit 

Flathead and the caves 
and corridors of that 

ancient land have been 

the battleground for 

tens of thousands of 


This game begins in the last days of 
the empire when a small group of 
citizens realise the end is in sight and 
they decide to hide the final secret in 
the 'Coconut of Quendor 1 . The secret 
will remain safe and hidden until one 
day, far in the future, some lowly 
peasant will be called to embark upon 
the quest and unravel the great 



PHONE: 01-431 1101 

PRICE: £ 24.99 




: 80% 


: 70% 


: 70% 


; 72% 

mystery. And that's where you come 

Previous Infocom adventures 
have occasionally included a small 
fight sequence, such as, the battle 
with the Troll in Zork I. In this game, 
the fighting aspect has been brought 
to the forefront and it plays a major 
part in the adventure. At every turn 
there are ghoulies, ghosties and long- 
legged beasties eager to pull you 
limb from limb and send you home to 

Mum in a matchbox. To help prevent 
this sorry state, the game is littered with 
weapons and magic items of the most 
vicious kind. Rusty daggers, fire- 
blasting rods and spell scrolls to turn 
things inside out! As with most games 
of this type, there are 'Olde Shoppes' 
selling magic and weapons whose 
proprietors have never heard of the 
'Under 18 Rule'. If the 'Olde Magik 
Shoppe' and its little-old-lady owner 
seems familiar to you, then a glance at 


the name of the game's author sho 
ring a bell. Brian Moriarty also wrot 
the great game WISHBRINGER, in 
which the Magik Shoppe and the ok 
lady also appeared. 

There are castles, lighthouses 
cellars and forests to hack through a 
explore. There is a Cruel Puppet, a 
Dust Bunny and an army of Christma 
trees to do battle with. There are milk 
potions, scrolls of forgetfulness and a 
staff of levitation to wield. The whole 
potpourri has been mixed well togethe 
with a large dose of fun and mystery. 

If you had not been told that this 
was an Infocom adventure, I suspect 
you would not recognize it as such, for 
the game has a very different appear- 
ance and feel to its predecessors. The 
game has changed its outward ap- 
pearance to a completely new format 
and brought in many new ways of con- 
trolling the action. 

The first signal that things are 
not as they were, is the appearance of 
a graphic loading screen - an unheard 
of piece of frippery for Infocom. The 
game then reveals medium resolution, 
coloured text. Shock, horror! Where 
are the good old black and white 
screens of yesteryear? If black charac- 
ters on a white background were good 
enough for my granny, then they are 

/ like the way the screen and keys 
may be changed to suit personal 
preferences, and (especially like the 
map-drawing facility which almost 
renders the paper map redundant. 
It s a pity that Infocom is not aware 
of the numbers of penniless British 
players who are using a TV screen 
in place of a monitor. To bring out 
text games which can only be 
played in medium mode, and then 
to insert weird fonts to write their 
magic words, can be painful to the 
optics. I am also not so sure that I 
wish to haue these goodies if it 
means that the game vocabulary is 
going to suffer. When the room 's full 
description is 'A shadowy room, 
littered with old barrets'. I begin to 
feel uneasy about standards. When 
I then type, 'Examine Barrets' and 
receive the reply, 7 don 't know the 
word barrels', I get downright sus- 

Not being a great fan of, 'You hit 
the monster 3 hits ' games, I started 
this game with trepidation. I must 
confess, however, that if evert were 
to be converted, this game would be 
the one to do it. The text may be 
shorter, but the Infocom magic is 
still there. The puzzles and fun are 
therein the machine - the wrapping 
is just different. The S Thas memory 
to include both the enhancements 
and the full text. Let's hope future 
games can have both. 


Tim's w frit Hit im. 

Ik fmt tar is clued. 
!m «m the fmt tier. 

Tie torts L«tmi 

The all-new screen layout - Infocoms bid lo catch up with the opposition? 

good enough for me. On the other 
hand, black on white screens are just 
great for frying your eyeballs! 

The next revelation is the ap- 
pearance of a small box on the right- 
hand side of the screen. The box has 
small lines sticking out from it at 
various angles. It soon becomes 
apparent that this interesting shape is 
the beginning of an automatic map- 
drawing facility which slowly spreads 
as you wander through the southlands 
of Quendor. (Just think, no more 
spaghetti maps drawn on the back of 
listing paper!) Movement around the 
map can be carried out in the usual 
way giving the north/south commands 
or by pointing at the map window with 
the mouse. 

The top row of function keys 
have been preset with the most useful 
commands and these may be rede- 
fined to other commands of your own 
choosing. You may also define new 
words to replace words that the game 
already understands. As the game 
features a pterodactyl, (try typing that 
without a dictionary!) you can make 
the game recognise the word 'BAT' in 
its place. Having 'taught' the game the 
word 'BAT' you may now type 'BLAT 
BAT' to give the beast a severe 

A status screen showing your 
current state may be called up when 
required or you may choose to have it 
permanently displayed. The name of 
the game appears to be: 'Let the 
player decide the screen layout*. 

There is, of course, a price to 
pay for all these goodies and that 
appears to be less text. Instead of the 
usual screenfulls of text we are used to 
seeing within an Infocom game, the 
text appears to have been put through 
a 'Scroll of Shinkage'. The number of 
words understood by the game has 

/ enjoyed this game. Its layout dif- 
fers from previous Infocom games in 
that, instead of just straight text, it 
can also display a simple map. I also 
liked the being able to use the 
mouse to point the direction in 
which to move. Another new fea- 
ture about it, is the split 'window- 
ing'. The first window is used to 
display information of your choos- 
ing, room description, inventory or 
status. The second window dis- 
plays your commands and the re- 
plies. The map diagram I found par- 
ticularly useful, especially when 
used in conjunction with the mouse 
and pointer. Theone irritation being 
that the diagram did not show 
closed doors. 

I ran this game using both a 
black-and-white and a colour TV. 
While it is obviously not as good as 
using a monitor, it is possible to play 
the game as long as you read the 
text carefully. 

also been dramatically reduced, and 
you will meet the dreaded 'I don't know 
that word' monster more often than 
you have seen him in the past. 

The game pack includes what 
appears to be a tea-towel souvenir 
showing a map of Quendor, plus a 
booklet entitled The Lore and Legends 
of Quendor'. The book has illustrations 
of the monsters and their weaknesses 
which is essential reading for all would- 
be heroes. 



■ ■■■ THE EDGE 

Computer games that contain 
wizards, goblins and trolls have 
never been my goblet of mead. 
However, one man's poison is 
another man's potion and so The 
Edge have made their successful 
eight-bit arcade adventure, 
called Warlock, available to ST 
users. A plexus of three-dimen- 
sional rooms are linked together 
by doorways and you must take 
the role of the evil Doomlord, 
whose castle is under siege from 
the White Wizard and his hordes 
of do-gooders. You begin the 
game as a Warlock, but you can 
change into a Goblin or Troll by 
moving the character near the 
so-called Changeling Skulls, 
which are perched on pedestals 
around the castle. The Warlock 
must touch the particular skull 
that represents the form that you 
wish him to adopt. 

The cursor keys control 
whichever character you choose 
to portray, while the 'X' and 'Z* 
keys project magic blasts and 
spells. Those awful forces of 
good emerge from the floor in the 
form of damsels, knights and 
wizards, and one magic blast 
from the 'Z' key freezes the do- 
gooder, while a second puts them 

out of the game for good. If you 
choose to portray the Troll, you 
can crush the goody-goodies 
with brute force, while the War- 
lock and Goblin demonstrate less 
crude magical powers. The holes 
from which the do-gooders 
emerge can be momentarily 
sealed with multiple blasts. War- 
lock contains the usual quota of 
the sort of objects that have be- 
come icons in these magic and 
lore games. Keys open locked 
doors, which stand between you 
and vital resources that replenish 
your Magic and Might levels. 
Collecting small orbs increases 
your firepower with exhaustible 
Zap spells, which must only be 
used in emergencies. When you 
portray the Warlock or Goblin, 
pressing the 'X' key activates the 
Zap spell and destroys every- 
thing in the room. However, if you 
are portraying a mere Troll, the 
Zap spell simply enables you to 
jump over an obstacle. Warlock 
has more then one level and you 
can change levels by dropping 
through the occasional trapdoor, 
when the relentless fight against 
good continues. 

You either love or hate 
role-playing fantasy games! 

Warlock is fairly representative of 
this sort of game, except for one 
modification: you portray evil 
and fight against good. Apart 
from this uninspired alteration, it 
is no different from (Jnderwurlde 
and Knightlore, which 'graced' 
the screens of Spectrum users 

over three years ago. If you were 
a lucky Spectrum owner who had 
an ancient peripheral called a 
Kempston interface, you could 
have plugged in a joystick and 
controlled the little goblin or 
warlock - you have no such 
choice in Warlock! 



I have yet to see a car-racing 
game on the ST that offers the 
excitement and challenge which 
was so abundant in Epyx's bril- 
liant Pitstop 2 for the Commo- 
dore 64. My hopes were raised 
after reports that Tynesoft's For- 
mula One Grand Prix resembled 
the aforementioned classic, but I 
was justifiably sceptical after 
discovering that it was to be re- 
leased in their Micro Value range. 
Twenty seconds of digitized 
music and an option-screen dis- 
playing six Grand Prix tracks 
from around the world, showed a 
promising start to the game. 
Each track presents a variety of 
driving environments, such as, 
the enduring circuits at Hocken- 
heim and Silverstone or the twist- 
ing bends of Monaco and Detroit. 
Additionally, choosing a car from 
the five major car-racing groups 
on the world racing circuit today, 
offers you a variety of perform- 
ance and handling characteris- 
tics. The selection of both track 
and car are made with the joys- 
tick and pressing the firebutton 
confirms the choice. 

The game-screen is typi- 
cally representative of recent 

car-racing games, which show 
the rear of the car and the track 
lying before you. The game itself 
is quite straightforward; avoid 
collisions and overtake as many 
cars as possible during the race. 
The joystick governs both the 
forward movement of the car as 
well as the transmission and, as 
the race begins, pressing the fire- 
button and pushing the joystick 
forward engages first gear. Then, 
releasing the firebutton and 
maintaining forward pressure on 
the joystick causes forward 
momentum. You must watch the 
rev-counter to make sure you do 
not exceed the limit, then, releas- 
ing pressure on the joystick, 
pressing the firebutton and push- 
ing forward once again, changes 
up into second gear. This proce- 
dure continues up to the sixth 
gear, where changing down is 
achieved in the same way, ex- 
cept that the joystick is pulled 

The effect of motion and 
speed is satisfactorily achieved 
by the usual red and white curb 
stones and so the inclusion of a 
striped road is quite unneces- 
sary. Steering is somewhat im- 

PRICE: £19.9 

PHONE: 091 414 4611 




Lap:2 Speed: 84 Score:06O5 

Revs: 5775 


precise and is complicated by the 
inclusion of a six gear transmis- 
sion. Combine this with the un- 
forgiving rev-limits and the fact 
that any collision with the com- 
puter-controlled cars results in 
immediate destruction, and you 

have a game with no flow and 
little appeal. Finally, Tynesoft 
have neglected to include the 
most important aspect in com- 
puter car racing - two player 




And God said: 'Let there be 
scrap!' And there was. And it 
came to pass that man eventu- 
ally ventured into space and the 
galaxy became an extension to 
the garbage heap he called 
Earth. Trash Heap's underlying 
theme is the science of garbage 
disposal in space. According to 
Diamond Games, the galactic 
council have formed a garbage 
authority called Intertrash to deal 

with the problem. However, leav- 
ing the garbage problem in the 
hands of the authorities, you 
must adopt the persona of a robot 
whose job it is to take a bottle of 
liqueur to a drunken emperor in 
another part of the galaxy. You 
have the choice of playing Trash 
Heap in plain vector graphics or 
in 3D. The 3D effect is achieved 
in the traditional way, with vector 
graphics drawn double in red and 

green and, with the 3D glasses 
supplied, you are all set to watch 
space garbage float by in glori- 
ous 3D. 

As many as nine players 
can participate in the game - if 
you can fit that many around 
your monitor and, after you have 
entered the number of players 
who are participating, the game- 
screen displays a 3D pyramid 
which is spinning on a tray in 
space. According to Diamond 
Games, this is a 'Pyrathermonu- 
clear', which contains the 
emperor's high-proof liqueur. 
The pyramid is mouse-con- 
trolled and you must evade the 
countless hunks of space junk 
that constantly fly towards you 
on their eternal journey through 
the voids of space. This scrap 

metal is like a catalogue of space 
craft that have appeared in sci- 
ence fiction films, such as dis- 
carded X wing fighters from Star 
Wars. At first, the junk appears as 
specks on the black back-cloth 
and you must anticipate the di- 
rection that it is taking, predict its 
time of arrival and take evasive 
action. To add to the confusion, 
being hit by some pieces of junk 
does not affect you, while others 
cause considerable damage. 

The 3D glasses and ef- 
fects are little more than a diver- 
sion from the lack of variety in 
Trash Heap. The controls are 
unresponsive and the game play 
is limited in every aspect. 

PRICE: £19.95 






■ ■ ■ TYNESOFTm 

By way of a change from the 
usual little humanoids, animals 
or aliens which scurry across the 
screens in the majority of arcade 
games, Frost Byte contains a 
little character called Hickey. 
Hickey resembles a roll of plasti- 
cine as he turns end over end 
across the screen and, by eating 
a selection of so-called sweets, 
his limited powers of movement 
can be increased and improved. 

For instance, red sweets enable 
him to move faster, blue sweets 
make him jump higher and green 
ones cushion his fall from plat- 
forms. The effect of the sweet can 
only be experienced once it has 
been consumed, and if Hickey 
eats a different coloured sweet, 
the powers within that particular 
piece of confectionery will super- 
sede the previous one. Therefore, 
it is not necessary to consume 

every sweet you come across as 
the powers within the existing 
one may be more beneficial to 
Hickey's particular situation. 

Hickey's ability to bounce 
relies on his level of 'Twang', 
which is monitored on a 'Twang' 
gauge. His end-over-end move- 
ments are as awkward as they are 
unique and the joystick does its 
level best to compensate. Left 
and right movements send 
Hickey worming across the 
screen, while pushing the joys- 
tick upwards enables him to 
spring up in the air and, as de- 
scribed, consuming a blue sweet 
increases his jumping capabili- 
ties considerably. Frost Byte is a 
typical multi-screen platform 
game in which each successive 
level introduces new hazards, 

situations and features. On the 
first screen, Hickey is standing on 
a platform above the ground with 
two bouncing heads to his right 
and a manic wizard rushing 
across the screen beneath. Con- 
tact with any of the other charac- 
ters destroys Hickey and so you 
must manoeuvre him off the plat- 
form to the ground, jump over the 
manic wizard and worm across 
the screen. 

This game is infuriating 
and compelling, which are two 
most important aspects in a suc- 
cessful arcade game. If you were 
a fan of Infogrames Bubble 
Ghost, then you will adore Frost 


HOUSE: TYNESOFT PHONE: 091 414 4611 







The pulsating throb of 
the heavy rotors 
thrashing the air is 
foreboding as the fear- 
some hulk of the AH-64 
Apache appears before 
your eyes - Apocalypse 
Now? No, this is merely 
the loading screen for 
Gunship, Microprose r s 
latest aircraft 

On this occasion, Major Bill Steeley and the 
boys have exchanged their golden wings for 
rotors to present their first military helicop- 
ter simulation. Pre-flight preparation plays 
an important role in aviation and Gunship 
has a lengthy but interesting preliminary 
section that encompasses complete flight 
and assignment training. In conjunction 
with a weighty operations manual, eight 
preparatory and tutorial screens ensure that 
you do not enter the cockpit without 
thorough training and briefing. 

Military vehicle identification acts as 
a simple aptitude test and, from an 
equipment inventory within the operations 
manual, a vehicle is randomly chosen and 
displayed on screen. You must scrutinize 
the designs on the Soviet and (JS military 
vehicles, compare them with the one on 
screen and, with the mouse, make your 
selection. A correct answer promotes you 
to the 'Pilot Roster', which displays the 
service records of pilots who have attained 

/ had doubts about the realism in 
FI 5 Strike Eagle, but have no such 
reservations about Gunship. Addi- 
tionally, the jerky scrolling has 
been ironed out, the terrain has far 
more variation and undulation 
and the con fusion with the numer- 
ous key functions has been satis- 
factorily rectified with the key- 
board overlay. To say that Micro- 
prose know their subject is an 
understatement, for they have 
claimed the field of military simu- 
lations as their own. Without 
doubt, Gunship is their most thor- 
ough and realistic simulation to 
date and, as a result, theetementof 
entertainment has been enhanced 
rather than sacrificed. 

The awesome AH-64 Apache helicopter gunship appears on the title screen 

high points in the game. Then, clicking on 
'Continue' takes you to the 'Default' section 
which describes aspects of the last pilot's 
assignment For your mission, you can 
increase or decrease the levels of adverse 
weather, the likelihood of crash landings 
and the realism of flight. 

Five missions are displayed on the 
'Duty Assignment' screen and Microprose 
advise that beginners select 'Flight Train- 
ing' in the relatively safe skies over 
Northern America. However, intermediates 
can choose to patrol one of four volatile 
areas around the world. Selections are 
made by clicking on one of the several 
badges which represent the various (JS 
squadrons who are posted in these areas. 
Each mission yields different aspects of 
combat, varying levels of military presence 
and adverse weather conditions. Finally, 
you are briefed on your assignment, your 
primary and secondary objectives, the 
weather conditions and your password. 
There is a countersign for every password 
within the operations manual which must 
be noted. Failure to give this countersign 
during the mission could mean that you are 








pursued and destroyed by your own allies. 

The helicopter has already been 
allocated standard weaponry which can be 
adjusted to suit your particular mission on 
the 'Arming' screen. You are presented with 
an overhead projection of the Apache and 
an inventory of armament. Adding and 
subtracting ammunition for the 30mm 
cannon, fuel, flares and chaff is simply a 
case of placing the cursor over the corre- 
sponding plus and minus signs and 
pressing the left-hand button. At the base 
of the screen, a digital readout of the 
helicopter's weight alters as you add or 
subtract the equipment. The heavy 
weaponry which comprises AIM-9L 
Sidewinders and the devastating AGM- 
1 14A Hellfire missiles, must be picked up 
from the inventory with the mouse, dragged 
and anchored on the helicopter. The 
Sidewinders can be placed on the wing- 
tips, whereas the hefty Hellfires can only be 
positioned on the interior wing stations. 

•ni i 


v\\ I 


•nr i 



PHONE: 0666-54326 

PRICE: £24.95 



: 83% 


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: 83% 


: 76% 


: 83% 


: 4336 




r UlR£S 

R6tf-H<»R i H.7B" 

HE3.LFIRE: ! FFflRx7 


VL 7S" 

RJEL.:Q376 J?. 7H"x7:00 

The weapons selection screen - Ihe choice is 

Once the helicopter is ready for flight, you 
can continue with the assignment or go on 
'Sick Call'. However, Microprose describe 
opting out of a mission as tantamount to 

Finally, you can put all of that 
theory and preparation into practice. The 
instrumentation in the cockpit is reputed to 
be realistic and comprises an Altimeter, 
Attitude and Artificial Horizon and Airspeed 
and Vertical Speed indicators. In addition to 
the traditional instrumentation, the naviga- 
tional and radar equipment is computerized 
and the centre of the control panel houses a 
Zoom-lens screen, which calculates the 
distance to a possible target and magnifies 
it thirty-two times for identification. 
Thoughtfully, Microprose have devised a 
cardboard overlay which fits over the 
keyboard to help with the many key 
commands. Helicopter controls are 
notoriously sluggish and there is a ten- 
dency to overcompensate for the lack of 
response, so all keyboard and joystick 
movements must me positive but slight. 
Tapping keys T and '2' power up the Port 
and Starboard engines and, as the RPM 
gauge rises to eighty percent, pressing the 
'3' key engages the rotor. Repeatedly 
tapping the 'Up Fast' key raises the torque 
and pressing the adjacent 'Up Slow' lifts the 
helicopter off the ground. Finally, easing 
the joystick forward achieves forward 
momentum and, by watching the Artificial 


The centre console, VDU map and dials close up 

Thanks to Gunship, MicroProsecan 
really claim they lead the way in 
military flight simulation. There is 
just the right balance of strategy 
and game-play. The controls of the 
Apache are as realistic as you can 
possibly get on a computer without 
resorting to specialist hardware 
and the in-flight characteristics are 
second to none for realism. The pre- 
flight planning, combat tactics and 
split-second decisions required, 
such as whether to abort the mis- 
sion and head for home or forge on 
to your target when your starboard 
engine has been taken out by AA 
Tire, just go to prove that this is THE 
flight simulator to have in your col- 
lection. Essential for all gung-ho 
Nam chopper drivers. 

Horizon gauge, you can increase the 'Up 
Slow' to level the helicopter. The basic 
concepts of helicopter flight rely on 'Cyclic' 
(joystick) movements for directional 
control and 'Collective' (key) commands 
which alter the altitude. 

The terrain through the windscreen 
is far more realistic, changeable and 

Blasting the enemy! 

tion and 
appear on 

interesting than the artificial, jerky scrolling 
that marred F15 Strike Eagle. Whilst 
keeping your eye on the Altimeter, selecting 
'Map* reveals a sector map of the terrain, 
which pinpoints your current position and 
enables you to plot the coordinates that 
were given in the briefing. Suddenly, the 
radar warns of enemy presence - red dots 
signify operational anti-aircraft weaponry; 
white dots C\ indicate enemy heli- 
copters. The threat display gives 
you time to avoid 
pressing the '9' key 
your 'Radar Jammer'. The 
right and left cursor keys 
reveal views from either 
side of the helico| 
and, if an enemy 
aircraft is 
you can 
change course, 
pursue and select 
the Target Acquisi- 
Designation' system, 
ately, weaponry sights 
screen and you can select the 30 mm 
cannon or Sidewinder, lock on with the 
target and activate by pressing the firebut- 
ton. SAM missiles constantly and tena- 
ciously chase the helicopter as you near 
your primary target and you can drop a 
metallic substance called 'Chaff to draw the 
missile away from you. As you near the 
target on the sector map. you must drop in 
altitude to avoid the radars, activate the 
'TADS', select Hellfire and press the 
firebutlon - Apocalypse Now! 

Gunship, forme, has tobeoneofthe 
most compelling simulations ever. 
Flying the AH 64 Apache is not 
easy, but thanks to the well-docu- 
mented manual, I soon managed to 
get. and stay, airborne. The graphi- 
cal representations are clear and 
very welldrawn; thesonics, too, are 
of premium quality. I stuck solidly 
to the training missions and this 
helped me to understand the 
aircraft's habits - and also kept me 
alive. The game incorporates vari- 
ous scenarios, each with more hos- 
tile attacks. With all its different 'ex- 
tras ' Gunsh ip should keep even the 
most ardent pilot busy for some 
time to come. I wholly recommend 
it to anyone. 



To certain software compa- 
nies, the much exploited 

theme of vertically- 
scrolling, aerial shoot' em- 
ups is rather like a comfort- 
blanket or favourite toy, 
which they seem reluctant 
to give up. In my opinion, 
this shows complacency 
and a lack of ingenuity and 

originality. Nevertheless, 

recent aerial assault games 

have contained variations 

on the theme which leave 

the software purchaser in 

a dilemma as to which 

title to buy. 

Slapfight induced the usual feeling of 
deja vu, which was emphasized by 
reading the obligatory scenario: 'You 
are the pilot of an aircraft called a 
Slapfighter and you must destroy the 
evil aliens which confront you'! FSot 
exactly awe inspiring! 

The so-called option screen 
asks whether you would like to have 
music accompanying the game or just 
sound effects - the latter proves to be 
less obtrusive and more tolerable. 
Then, without further briefing or 
preparation, you are presented with 
the game-screen. The scenario 
describes the terrain that you are 
assaulting as: 'The evil and hostile 
planet Orac'. However, it reminded me 
of an aerial view of a pleasant suburb, 
complete with meadows, ornamental 
gardens, swimming pools and 
chateaus. The screen scrolls vertically 
at a fixed and slow pace, while the 
separately animated Slapfighter moves 
independently of the screen. If you 
relinquish pressure on the joystick, the 
craft remains stationary and the screen 
continues to scroll relentlessly on- 
wards. However, pushing the joystick 
forwards increases the speed of the 
craft and, on reaching the top of the 
screen, you slow down to the speed of 
the scrolling. 

You can choose to play the 
game with joystick or mouse, and so 
my first task was to test which controls 


were preferable. Utilizing all eight 
directional points, the craft can be 
manoeuvred with more precision with 
the joystick, while the mouse offers 
swifter but less precise control. Ini- 
tially, both controls are sluggish but, 
throughout the course of the game, 
you can increase the speed of the craft 
and the controls. You are soon pre- 
sented with the opportunity to test the 
Slapfighter's manoeuvrability and 
weaponry capabilities as the first wave 
of opposition appears on screen in a 
variety of formations. These patrol 
droids have the ability to emit missiles 
in all directions with disturbing accu- 
racy and intelligence. However, the 
Slapfighter is equipped with a single- 
shot, double-barrelled cannon which, 
at first, proves to offer little in the way 
of protection against the better 
equipped opposition. 

Destroying an enemy patrol 
droid yields a golden star which, when 
collected, activates the first of six 
icons at the base of the screen. These 

/ have an admission to make! 
The tenacious squadrons of 
aerial assault craft have finally 
penetrated my shields and bat- 
tered down my defences. In- 
spired by the variations on the 
theme, my interest in aerial 
assault games has been re- 
kindled. Of course, the theme in 
general has been criminally 
exploited, but I welcome the 
ingenuity which has been 
shown in recent releases. 
Slapfight's attraction is to be 
foundin the quick succession of 
the craft's changing capabili- 
ties. Without this feature, it 
would be fairly representative 
of the many games which 
make up, this most prolific 
brand of arcade entertainment. 


icons yield bonus capabilities and 
facilities and, if you can direct your 
attention away from the action and 
press the spacebar, you benefit 
immediately from the indicated 
capability. Representing enhanced 
speed, the first icon illuminates after 
collecting the first star and pressing 
the spacebar introduces swifter flight 
and control. The next four stars 
progressively enhance the speed until 
the craft moves too quickly for the size 
of the game screen. When you have 
increased the speed to its full poten- 
tial, the next star ac- 
tivates the succeed- 
ing icon, which 
increases the power 
of your weaponry. In [~I ; 
addition to the fore 
cannon, wing- 
mounted missile 
launchers emit 
missiles to the left 
and right. Naturally, 
the opposition 
counteract the 
increasing effective- 
ness of your craft. 
The golden 
stars become 
increasingly difficult 
to obtain and if you 
manage to gain the 
bonus facility within 
the fourth icon, the Slapfighter grows 
larger with an increased firepower 
capacity. The more effective weaponry 
is very welcome, but the increased size 
of the craft obviously makes it an easy 
target for the enemy. By the time you 
have reached this stage of the game, 
the terrain has changed from pleasant 
countryside to an ugly and changeable 
industrial landscape. The enemy adopt 
other forms and are far more incon- 
spicuous and, likewise, your own craft 

often blends in with the terrain. 

The fifth bonus facility is the 
most useful, effective and devastating. 
At the touch of the firebutton, a bomb 
is ejected from the front of the ship to 
clear the way and it doesn't take long 
to obtain the next facility. A Laser may 
be less obtrusive than a bomb, but it 
proves to be equally as devastating. 
The enemy may start their attack 
tentatively but, by the time you have 
gained your seventh bonus facility, the 
attack is fierce and frenzied. Briefly 
reaping the benefits of the Laser, you 

quickly gain the 
succeeding bonus 
facility - the long- 
awaited Homing 
Missile. Now you 
can dispatch 
missiles with the 
accuracy that the 
enemy have 
displayed from 
the beginning of 
the game. How- 
ever, this facility 
is equally short- 
lived as you 
quickly obtain the 
eighth and final 
bonus capability, 
a shield which 
affords limited 
and temporary 
protection from enemy fire. The next 
golden star takes you right back to the 
beginning and, as the game continues 
relentlessly, you must again build up 
your Slapfighter. ST^ 

Slapfight hasn't lost too much dur- 
ing its transition from the arcades. 
The graphics, sounds, and general 
feet of the game have all been care- 
fully preserved. Why then, do I 
loathe this game so much? I guess 
it s all to do with my complete lack 
of interest. After several tries to 
complete the first levels. I eventu- 
ally found myself cursing the game. 
It is not that the game is of poor 
quality, but that I found it so frus- 
trating, after getting over half-way 
through an attack wave, to be 
zapped and returned to the start. If 
you have the time and patience to 
play this game, Isuggestyou buy it 
now. Otherwise leave it strictly 


What, another v-scrolling shoot- 
'em-up; so how is this one differ- 
ent from all the rest? The play area 
is large and the scenery well 
drawn, but there is little connec- 
tion between this and the back- 
drop. To begin with, the game is 
difficult with little in the way of 
hectic blasting - the biggest chal- 
lenge is dodging enemy bombs 
with your slow, lumbering space 
ship. Eventually, there are more 
gadgets to pick up and things 
start to get interesting, but the 
game never puts you on the edge 
of your chair. It tacks that certain 
element which makes games like 
Xenon so good and, in the early 
stages, it is positively annoying. 




PHONE: 061-832 6633 

PRICE: £19.95 



: 64 % 


: 48 % 


: 65 % 


: 35 % 


: 58' % 


: 30000 



Plot only is the Music 
Construction Set an 
excellent introduction 
to creating music on 
the ST, it is a fine music 
composition tool. Writ- 
ing music is as simple 
as placing notes on the 
staue with the mouse 
and, eoen if you are 
music-illiterate, you 
can compose (by ear) 
on a piano keyboard on 

Predominantly icon-activated with 
pull-down menus at the top of the 
screen, the beginner benefits from 
clearly-defined icons and a thoughtful 
and comprehensive screen layout, 
which make the fundamental proce- 
dures immediately accessible and 
usable. Additionally, an experienced 
composer could very quickly adapt his 

music writing to the system. Can 
music construction really be this 

The piano keyboard is stretched 
across the base of the screen and, as 
described, you can enter the notation 
by pointing a cursor at a specific note 
on the keyboard and clicking the 

The Music Construction Set is an 
ideal package for anyone with an 
interest in music. With its easy-to- 
understand manual, and user- 
friendly environment, the MCS is 
accessible to anybody - eoen 
those, like me, who don't really 
know the first thing about cro- 
chets and semi-quavers. The MCS 
has many of the features that 
would normally be found on the 
more expensive music programs, 
and because it is that much 
cheaper, the MCS should appeal 
to any budding Beethoven. I was 
particularly Impressed with the 
keyboard arrangement, from 
which your notes appeared on the 
score sheet - an added bonus for 
those of us who can only play by 
ear. Overall, the MCS represents 
fine value for money and is welt 
worth seeking out. 

t File Key line Global Hove Edit Options Jnstrunents 


Construction Sets main screen 


mouse button. Beneath the keyboard, 
an icon-panel contains the major edit 
functions which, in conjunction with a 
so-called Mote Palette, enables you to 
select specific notes, rests and modifi- 
ers and place them on the treble or 
bass staves, which are housed in the 
Score window. Moving the cursor to 
the 'File' menu and clicking on 'New 
Score', wipes the slate clean and you 
can start composing. The key is 
automatically preset on 'C with a 4/4 
time signature, which can be altered if 
necessary. You are then asked to enter 
the time signature on the treble stave. 

Moving the cursor to the Note 
Palette, you can select any note, drag 
it to the stave and anchor it. Then, at 
the base of the screen, a 'Voice' icon, 
which should be displaying a black 
number * 1 * (if not, double-clicking on 
the icon turns the number T and the 
note itself black), enables you to 
define all the first batch of notes which 
are entered on the score as 'Voice 1'. 
Defining each voice by colour allevi- 
ates any confusion caused when you 
have created other voices in the score. 
If you are unfamiliar with music 
notation, the last note that you have 
placed on the stave is displayed at the 
base of the screen. A wrong or mis- 
placed note can be deleted from the 
stave by selecting 'Erase' or, alterna- 
tively, the entire set can be cut with a 
'Trash' option. After placing a selec- 
tion of notes on the stave, you can 
select the 'Play' icon, which replays 
the notes in sequence. However, 
without defining the length of specific 
notes and the spaces in between them, 
the most famous of tunes will be 
totally unrecognisable. The Note 
Palette contains all of the notation, 
such as, crochets, quavers, semibre- 
ves and rests and you can experiment 
to see which note-lengths fit the best. 

The Note Palette also contains 
'Note Modifiers' which perform a 
number of functions, such as placing 
the sharp, flat or natural accent on the 
note. For instance, you can select 
'Sharp* from the Note Palette and 
place it on the specific note pointer. 
Then, when you play the score back, 
that note will sound as a sharp note. 

; Fill t«a Ti»« *uu\ Km Edit [ptiws Insunnu 


HIM Ring* 36 - Bit 

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Cwttinws Sustain 



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Waveform editor 

Preparing a piece of music for printing 
requires tieing some of the notes 
together and generally neatening up 
the score. Selecting the 'Tie Modifier' 
from the note palette, you place the tie 
on the specific two notes and click the 
mouse button. You can also tie 
'Triplets' by placing the icon before 
the first note and clicking. Perfecting 
your score may require a number of 
modifications and, by selecting 'Insert' 
from the icon panel, you can add 
space to your score for these modifi- 
cations. Ensuring that the T-shaped 
cursor is the same colour as the notes, 
you place it over the second note in 
the score and click on that specific 
note and all of the following notes until 
the end of the score. 

A sizable score can be split into 
'Blocks' by pulling down the 'Edit' 
option, clicking on 'Start' and placing 
another T-shaped cursor in front of 
the first note, clicking and then 
clicking behind the last one that you 
want to be affected by the modifica- 
tions. In conjunction with the 'Edit' 

Electronic Arts have, in all 
likeliness, found a rather 
important niche in the music 
software market with this pro- 
gram. MCS, as a beginner's 
tool, Is nothing short of bril- 
liant. It will enable users, with 
little or no preoious musical 
experience, to get to grips with 
musical notation and gradu- 
ally learn to compose simple 
tunes. In reality it will turn out 
to be a stepping stone towards 
more complex MIDI programs. 
The front end is very user- 
friendly and allows all selec- 
tions and operations to be 
made using the mouse. One 
minor niggle though: why 
can't it run on mono 

i File Ley Iim C-IoM) How Edit Options Instrunents 

J - P«e 1 Of 25 - Prduie 

o • 


; Plying Options ,' 

Playing options 

option, you can 'Copy Voices* or 'Cut' 
and 'Paste' the block elsewhere in the 
score. Pulling down the 'Instruments' 
menu reveals a selection of brass, 
woodwind, string and percussion 
instruments, which can be inserted in 
the particular block that you are 
working on. You can change the 
instrument within a specific voice by 
selecting a 'Magnifying Glass' option 
and clicking on the note at the begin- 
ning of the block. This reveals a 
dialogue window which informs you of 
the voice, pitch, duration and the 
assigned instrument of that particular 
note. Then, selecting 'Start' again and 
clicking on the note that you have just 
inspected, renders the block ready to 
edit. You can exchange the existing 
instrument for another by selecting 
'Replace Instrument', choosing a new 
instrument that you want to assign to 
the voice and click on 'OK'. 

In addition to the music creation 
and editing facility, you can invent 
your own sounds and effects with a 
built-in Waveform Editor. Selecting the 
'Wave' icon from the panel, the 
dialogue-box asks which instrument is 
to be used and modified. Then, 
clicking on the chosen instrument and 
on 'OK', places you in the 'Waveform 
Editor'. Selecting Test' allows you to 
listen to the chosen instrument before 
any modifications and the so-called 
Tone Generator' continues to play up 
and down the scale until you switch it 
off again. There are eight 'Wave-point* 
editors which correspond with the 
eight numbers on the Wave graph and, 


1 X 




1 • 1 
1 • 1 
1 • 1 

1 • 1 

1 • 1 





1 040ST 

1 V I^W %M* 1 

When something is described as 
simplistic, it can often be miscon- 
strued as basic, shallow, over- 
simplified or eoen inadequate. 
But, how do you quantify simplic- 
ity and adequacy? Presumably, 
Jan Hammer or Vangelis would 
require and expect more than this 
package can offer, but at what 
price? The Music Construction 
Set's strength is its simplicity - it 
is also easily affordable! 

Invariably, Midi and music 
packages are so complex that 
losing the instructions manual 
would render the software com- 
pletely useless. Therefore, it is re- 
freshing to use a package which is 
so unashamedly simple and 
straightforward. Can music con- 
struction really be this simple? 

clicking on four large arrows which 
point up, down, left and right, you can 
alter the size of the wave. The Wave 
graph is a graphical representation of 
the sound generated for each note 
played. Therefore, if the wave is short, 
the note will correspond. Periodically, 
you can press the 'Test' button to 
listen to the changes and create a list 
of your own custom instruments in 
addition to the existing traditional 


PHONE: 0753-49442 
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The basic theme behind 

Boulder Dash can be 

described in two words, 



Ask any seasoned arcade game player 
to name his ten favourite games of all 
time, and you can be certain that this 
classic will be included somewhere in 
the list. If you are unfamiliar with 
Boulder Dash, it is a subterrane 
game in which an endearing 
little character called 
Rockford excavates i 

earth in search of spar- Z. 
kling gems. Successful 
completion of a screen / 
relies on your ability to 
manoeuvre Rockford 
through the earth to collect 
the necessary quota of 
diamonds and, avoiding 
tumbling boulders and 
countless other underground 
hazards, reach home base 
before the time runs out. No 
description could ever do the 
game justice! There are 
two Boulder Dash games 
already available for 
the ST; Boulder Dash Construction Kit, 
by First Star, and Skulldiggery, which 
is currently in limbo between distribu- 
tion companies. The Construction Kit 
comprises fifteen pre-constructed 
screens, which were converted from 
the original eight-bit version, and a 
screen editor. Skulldiggery, however, 

took the fundamental theme a stage 
further, by introducing simultaneous 
two-player action on a dual screen. 
For copyright reasons, Rockford was 
replaced by a different gem guzzler, 
resembling Pacman and the boulders 
were changed to skulls. 

Inspired by this re-kindled 
interest in gem guzzling, First Star 
have allowed their immaculate con- 
ception to be turned into an arcade 
extravaganza, called Rockford. The 

game's namesake, however, does not 
appear in the game. In fact, that 
famous and much-loved cavemite has 
been replaced by a small and charac- 
terless human, and to make this 
travesty even more ludicrous, he 
dresses up in a little cowboy or 

doctor's outfit to suit the particular 
theme. The game has five separate 
themes, with four levels per theme 
which, in turn, have four screens. 
When calculated, this justifies Mel- 
bourne House's boast that Rockford 
has eighty totally separate screens. 
These themes or so-called 'worlds', 
show Rockford's impostor in all sorts 
of guises to match his situation. An 
option screen enables you to choose 
one of the themes by moving a bar up 
or down the list and pressing the 
firebutton. The second option asks if 
one or two players are participating. 
However, for some unknown reason, I 
was unable to choose the two-player 

The first theme is called 
'Rockford the Hunter in the Caverns of 
Craymar'. The game-play occupies 
the entire screen and moving Rockford 
to the edge of the visible area induces 
the screen to scroll and reveal the four 
screens that make up each level. The 
simple status display comprises the 
number of items that you have col- 
lected, a timer and the number of lives 
remaining for that specific level. A 
window in the centre of the screen 
displays an animation sequence of 
Rockford in his particular outfit, 
surrounded by all of the features and 
adversaries which are related to that 
particular theme. Pressing the firebut- 
ton initiates the game screen, triggers 
off the timer and starts the game. In 
this particular theme, the collectable 
items are Pharaoh's golden death 
masks, which replace the usual 
sparkling gems, while Rockford's 

PTS 0X13189 s $ 


Mim 1113 M f „ 


I'f ill 111* if* ll'i [it till [Hi Hit in* in ri»* 

The Caverns of Craymar 

The Kitchens of Kyssandra 


What would the art world say if 
someone painted Wolfrace wheels 
and go-fast stripes on Constable's 
Haywaln? How would the music 
press receive a 12-inch scratch 
disco-mix of Sultans of Swing? 
What Arcadia have done with 
Boulder Dash Is tantamount to 
sacrilege! However, although the 
theme idea Is an unnecessary and 
totally useless exercise, enough of 
the original appeal shines 
through the heavy cosmetics to 
save the game. The controls are 
adequately responsive, except 
when Rockford reaches the edge 
of the screen, where you momen- 
tarily lose tight control of the 
game. All of the efforts made in 
tartlng up this ageing classic have 
failed, as the original Is immeas- 
urably superior to what can only 
be described as a gaudy extrava- 

PHONE: 01-377 6880 
PRICE: £19.95 





OVERALL : 65 % 

1ST DAY SCORE =30,000 

impostor is disguised as an explorer 
with safari jacket and matching pith 
helmet. He is fully controlled with the 
joystick, with up, down, left and right 
movements directing him accordingly. 
Additionally, snapping the joystick 

hazards which are, of course, related 
to food. Snakes made out of hamburg- 
ers and pizzas and flying fried eggs 
and toast take up the chase, while the 
boulders have been replaced by 
oranges. There are some interesting 
formations in this theme and expected 
completion of the screens has been 
timed to the second. For the third 
theme, Rockford is dressed in his little 
cowboy outfit in The Search for El 
Dorado'. The general game-play is 
practically the same as for the other 
themes, with added features, which 

Ever since its first appearance 
back in 1983, I've been a dedi- 
cated fan of Boulderdash and Its 
star, Rockford. After being some- 
what disappointed with the Boul- 
derdash Construction Kit, I 
viewed the release of Rockford 
with a little scepticism. The game 
is a copy of the Arcade version, 
setting Rockford in a number of 
guises. All the original features 
are still here, plus a few new ones. 
How Interesting it is to see a 
computer game converted onto an 
arcade machine and then back 
again. Rockford has lost nothing; 
the gameplay is still as compel- 
ling and the action as fast as ever. 
My only advice to anybody think- 
ing of buying Rockford is - go 
ahead, it's great. 

rather gory theme in which he must 
collect hearts, avoid severed ears and 
gouged-out eyes, while skeletons and 
Frankenstein monsters await to be 
released from their subterranean tomb. 


COLLflfiSQ 6 


PLflVEF; GfiE 

The Search for El Dorado 

quickly to the left or right whilst 
simultaneously pressing the firebutton, 
creates a firecracker that can remove 
the nearest section of earth or collect a 
gem, without the risk of moving and 
being crushed by a boulder. Each of 
its four screens yields an increased 
quota of snakes, bats and monkeys, 
which chase Rockford through the 
shafts that he has dug. You have three 
lives in each theme and, at his demise, 
an animation sequence shows a snake 
wrapping itself around his neck. 

The second theme, we are told, 
takes us to the Kitchens of Kyssandra 
and, as you might expect, Rockford is 
dressed as a chef. The useless sce- 
nario explains that the treasured 
apples of eternal youth have been 
stolen and taken to the greedy 
Overlord's kitchen. Rockford must 
collect all of the apples and avoid the 

Rockford In space 

include spinning guns and tomahawks 
and wagons and trains which, when 
released, pursue Rockford down his 
tunnels. The penultimate theme takes 
Rockford into space and, dressed in a 
space suit, he must collect golden 
suns and avoid planets, comets, 
space-ships and wayward rockets. 
Finally, Rockford the Doctor stars in a 







1 040ST 

□ EX 

One thing that cannot be said 
about Rockford is that it is dull. 
Bright, gaudy colours explode all 
over the screen - playing after a 
night on the tiles is not recom- 
mended. However, the game- 
play is excellent. The screens are 
carefully laid out to ensure frus- 
tration until the required tech- 
nique is discovered and then it's 
on to the next level. I found the 
difficulty just right for a non- 
expert such as myself- no doubt 
more accomplished players will 
occasionally find it too easy. Still, 
the ease of play disappears quite 
quickly, leaving the hardened 
Rockford player to struggle on 
alone. This type of game really is 
of the 'just-one-more-go' genre 
and, as such, is wholeheartedly 



With the ending of the 
dark ages, the land of 
Britannia now seeks a 
mortal who will em- 
bark on a new quest 
This task is to bring a 
new light into the life 
and hearts of people 
who are demoralised 
and scattered through- 
out the empire of Lord 

This quest is known as the 'Quest of 
the Avatar 1 . Beginning as an inexperi- 
enced adventurer you must travel the 
land gaining knowledge and power 
finally to achieve the inner light of a 
pure Avatar. 

The Ultima series of games at- 
tempts to combine the two different 
genre of Adventure and Fighting 
Fantasy. Viewed through a scrolling 
window, you must move your charac- 
ter over the large map of Britannia and 
the surrounding islands. Entering the 
various towns and castles causes the 
screen display to change from the 
countryside map of woods and moun- 
tains to a display of rooms and streets. 
Within the towns you will find a host of 
other characters with whom you can 
converse and gather knowledge. 
Gradually you must persuade a band 
of companions to aid you in your 
quest and you will be responsible for 



PHONE: 0666-54326 

PRICE: £24.95 



: 75% 


: 40% 


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: 50% 


: 56% 


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their health and safety in the coming 

Creation of your own character 
is achieved as the result of answering 
the questions of a mysterious gypsy. If 
it is obvious from your answers that 
you are the type of person who lets 
your sword arm speak for you, then 
you will undoubtedly be cast as a 
fighter. If, however, you are more a 
thinker than a doer, the gypsy may 
cast you in the guise of a spell-casting 
Magus. Needless to say, the gypsy 
carefully considered my answers and 
created my character in the form of a 
simple fighter - strong in the arm and 
strong in the head, no doubt! You may 

select your merry men from the ranks 
of Shepherds, Bards, Rangers, Tinkers, 
Paladins and Druids which roam the 
mainland and islands through which 
you travel. Each character has his or 
her own special skills in war and 
magic. There are 27 different spells to 
be learnt and employed by the magi- 
cians amongst you, each needing the 
correct mixture of mysterious ingredi- 
ents to achieve its efficacy. Spells 
such as the Iceball require Mandrake 
Root and Black Pearl to chill the heart 
of your adversary, whilst a Ginseng 
and Spider Silk mixture will cause your 
enemies to fall into a deep sleep. 

Within the towns are the various 
inns, pubs, armouries, herb shops and 
temples of healing where provisions 
may be bought and gossip exchanged. 
In all your dealings with merchants 
and townsfolk you must behave as a 
pure-hearted knight, as any evil deed 
will be sure to cause your eventual 
undoing. The armouries contain the 
usual essentials of swords, axes and 
daggers plus ready-to-wear chainmail 
and magic plate. Talking to the 
inhabitants is essential, as each 
appears to hold one small part to the 
overall puzzle of your quest. Asking 
after the health of the landlord may 
reveal that he has been ill, but cured 
himself with a local herb. You could 
then ask where the herb was to be 
found. Armed with this knowledge you 
may shuffle off and gather a bunch of 
spindle-root for your own use. Leaving 
the towns and travelling the country- 
side is a risky business, as you will 
inevitably be set upon by rogues and 
monsters. When the action does begin 
you must select a weapon from your 


■ ■.-::- 










1 1 

ii '■*-' 











Tkroask tke satkerina dusk you see a 
secluded sypsy Mason sitting off in tke 
Hoods. Tke Music seeMS to ennnnte froM 
tke Mason. As you dran nearer* a hohoh's 
Voice Heaves into tke Music, saving: 
'Vou May approach- seeker. *C 

In tke valley beloH you see Hkat appears 
to fee a fair. It seeMS stranse tkat voa 
cane tkat nay earlier and noticed 
notkins. As you null this over* your 

feet carry voa dOHn tOHard tke site.c 


possessions and use the cursor keys to 
indicate the direction of your strike. 
The combat screen will show the 
disposition of the two warring bands 
and, as each group moves into battle, 
you must manoeuvre your compan- 
ions into the best battle order to deal 
with the differing nasties. 

Indicators will show the current 
strength of each member of your band 
and you must use their special skills 
correctly to achieve each victory. 
Success in a battle will reward you 
with experience and gold chests. Gold 
chests must be approached with 
caution as they may be traps, so a 
high-dexterity user should be selected 
as the person to open the chest. 

In addition to foot-slogging your 
way around the empire, you may 
purchase horses or even commandeer 
a ship for travel between the islands. 
Travelling by ship has the additional 
advantage that you may use the 
onboard cannons to attack the various 
pirate ships which ply the seas and 
bays, thus gaining large amounts of 

An even more spectacular 
method of travel is by the use of magic 
gates which mysteriously appear with 
the phases of the twin moons. Entering 
these gates will whisk you to the far 
corners of the empire in the blink of an 
eye, thus saving on the feet and 

There are 26 main commands 
which the game recognises, such as, 
SEARCH. Having selected to TALK' to 
a local, you are able to discuss his 
name, job and health. The secret of 
further conversation is to pick out key 
words from his initial answers in order 
to ask additional questions. In this way 
you will find out which innkeeper 
knows where the deadly nightshade 
blooms, and the location of the magic 
red stone. As the time taken to com- 
plete this game is in the region of 100 
- 200 hours, you are given the option 
to save the state of your game on a 
second player disk. 

The game pack contains two 
disks, the first containing the superflu- 
ous pretty pictures shown while the 
opening blurb is displayed, the second 
containing the actual game. A booklet 
entitled The History of Britannia' is 
included which details the various 
character types and their many skills, 
plus a list of the various nasties to be 
found skulking beneath the rocks. A 
second, beautifully illustrated, booklet 
called The Book of Mystic Wisdom' is 
supplied, and this documents the 
many spells and potions which may be 
used in the game. 

Tke svpsv places tke 
upon tke taJble* they 
CoHPtssion and Valor 
'Consider tkis:'t* 

first tHo cards 
are tke cards of 
Ske says* 


Rubbish, useless, waste of space. 
These were my first impressions of 
the game. I then stopped and read 
the books that came with it. That 
helped, but this is a game that is 
based on a good idea - it's just the 
implementation that leaves a lot to 
be desired. I suppose that having 
put so much into the graphics they 
could not putas much into the other 
parts, such as, the interactive side, 
(i.e. talking to the characters). I 
found these limitations very inhibit- 
ing. On the good side, an awful lot 
of time and effort has been spent on 
the story line and the attendant 
documentation, and I particularly 
liked the acquisition of spelt compo- 
nents, mixing and creating of spelts. 
One last thing: why wouldn 't any- 
body join my party? Is there some 
location where you can buy soap or 
an anti-perspirant deodorant? 

As the documentation itselfstates, a 
large part of this game centres 
around the conversations with the 
other characters. Only by quizzing 
the other inhabitants can you gain 
enough knowledge to solve the 
game. Coming from a background 
of text adventures, I found this game 
very frustrating as the words recog- 
nised by the system are extremely 
limited. After the hundredth fighter 
tells you no more than that you 
need to keep a pure heart, you will 
be tempted to fit an axe through his 

The crude graphics used in this 
game did nothing to bring it to life 
forme, and while I accept that there 
are many hours of use to be found in 
this package for already committed 
fantasy fans, I suspect that it will 
attract few converts from adventure 




With a physique like an 

armoured personnel 

carrier and a name 

that sounds like a 

cavalry charge, the 

mighty Arnold 
Schwarzenneger has 
achieved even greater 
fame and success as a 
screen commando, than 
he did in his unprece- 
dented body-building 

His latest film is called Predator, which 
received favourable reviews even from the 
so-called serious press. The Sunday Times: 
'The combat scenes are even better than in 
Platoon'! The theme of military combat is 
already well subscribed to in the software 
market and so every new addition to the list 
must have something original to offer. 
There are three formats which have been 
adopted in combat games: the 'Com- 
mando' style, which comprises a soldier 
running across a vertically-scrolling terrain; 
the side-view with horizontal scrolling, 
which is used in Player's recent release 
called Joe Blade; and the overhead view, 
which is exclusive to Interceptor's brilliant 
Eagle's Nest. Recently, the onus has been 
on software companies to make their 
military combat games less violent. This 
request was heeded in Player's Joe Blade, 
which placed emphasis on searching for 
objects and rescuing kidnapped politicians, 

rather than gaining bonus-points with a 
high body-count. In contrast, Activision 
appear to have totally disregarded this 
move to pacifism and, as a result, Predator 
is bloody and violent. 

The loading screen displays a slick 
animation sequence of the alien Predator's 
space craft orbiting the earth, which is 
followed by a digitized picture of Amy 
baring his mighty chest. After a double- 
disk-loading ceremony, the game screen 
materializes to reveal a clearing in the 
jungle, accompanied by the distinctive 
sound of an approaching helicopter. Sure 
enough, a helicopter hovers into view, a 
rope drops from the hatch and five identical 
commandos abseil to the ground. The final 
commando is Major Alan Schaefer who was 
portrayed by Schwarzenegger in the film 
and who you must direct in the game. He is 
slightly different to the other commandos, 
with a bulkier body and bare arms - 
presumably, they couldn't find an army 
shirt to fit Amy's 24-inch biceps. The other 
commandos run off screen, and pushing 
the joystick to the right sends Schaefer 
running after them. The screen begins to 

scroll as the character reaches the centre, 
although he can run faster than the 
scrolling speed. Although the game scrolls 
horizontally, there is some depth to the 
screen and redirecting the pressure on the 
joystick to diagonal positions, moves him 
to the back and front of the screenThe 
status display at the top of the screen 
consists of a digital timer and points gauge, 
with life and energy sources indicated by 
red bars. Initially, Schaefer is armed with an 
Ml 6 Armalite which he nestles under one 
massive arm, plus three hand grenades, 
which must only be used as a last resort. 
Unlike the film in which Amy appears to 
have an unlimited supply of bullets, your 
ammunition is quickly exhaustible. 
Therefore, a weaponry gauge on the status 
display indicates the ammunition levels and 
the number of grenades you have at your 
disposal. A sniper in a tree makes his 
presence known at the back of the screen. 
Pressing the firebutton activates the 
weaponry and, while the firebutton is 
pressed, the joystick governs the aiming of 
the gun. In order to retaliate, you must 
move within range of the sniper's rifle and 
each time Schaefer is hit the energy gauge 
depletes by one bar. 

Schaefer quickly catches up with 
the first of his comrades, who is lying dead 
in a pool of blood and, suddenly, the screen 
turns blue, the monitor emits a ghostly 
sound and a triangular gunsight chases him 
across the screen. The sights are easily 
avoidable and if you keep within reachable 
distance of the dead comrade and wait for 
the screen to return to normal, you can 



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: 3350 







1 040ST 




Schaefer walks straight Into an ambush amongst some derelict buildings 


Predator reminds me of the 
Rambo, Commando-type games, 
only this time the action takes 
place ouer a horizontally-scrolling 
background. I was impressed 
with the sound created by the 
helicopter rotor blades - could it 
perhaps have been sampled from 
the real thing? Running through 
the jungle is a pretty experience - 
the backdrops are well drawn 
and quite convincing. The action, 
for the fist two leuets, sees old 
Schwarzenegger running the 
gauntlet through enemy territory. 
The best tactic seems to be to stop 
only to pick up fresh weapons - 
otherwise keep mooing! Predator 
is a difficult game but one in 
which your performance should 
improve with every sitting. Many 
people will dislike it but it does 
represent a challenge. And, un- 
like in the films, Arnie actually 
does die occasionally! 

exchange the Ml 6 Armalite for a more 
effective and devastating heavy-gauge 
shotgun. This exchange is achieved by 
moving near to the weapon, pressing 
'Return' once to drop the existing gun, and 
again to pick up the replacement. Pushing 
the joystick to the right sets Schaefer 
running, and before long he is confronted 
by a flock of birds which in normal circum- 
stances would not be a threat to the mighty 
Schwarzenegger. However, in this case, 
every bird that hits him depletes his energy. 
Obviously, the birds are introduced to 
waste ammunition, but surely Activision 
could have thought of something more 

With the ammunition spent on 
warding off the killer birds, Schaefer may 
as well get rid of the useless weapon and 
rely on unarmed combat for his protection. 
Without a weapon, pressing the firebutton 
activates the unarmed combat mode. Then 
pushing the joystick forwards activates a 
punch; pulling backwards blocks; and 
redirecting the joystick diagonally sends 
out a powerful kick. However, not even 
Schwarzenegger could swat high-velocity 
bullets and, as he runs into the first 
ambush, his only defence is to resort to the 
hand- grenades. Pressing the spacebar 
throws the grenade a short distance, while 
the left-hand 'Shift' key sends it further. 
Another dead comrade offers the opportu- 
nity to re-arm Schaefer and, again, the 
screen turns blue and the triangular sight 

Entering level 2 over a log bridge 

chases him across the screen. Again, the 
sight is easily avoidable and you can return 
to the body and pick up the new weapon. 
As you progress through the game, the 
ambushes occur more regularly and 
intensely, with the enemy hiding in foxholes 
and machine gun posts. Eventually, the 
jungle ends and Schaefer runs into an 
urban situation, where the enemy take 
position inside the buildings - time is ( CTA | 
running out! ^^J 

I'm still fairly undecided about 
this one. It is true that the game 
has a fair amount of action and the 
animation of the characters is 
quite good. However, the pace of 
the game Is so slow that, on get- 
ting killed for the umpteenth time, 
I actually timed the opening heli- 
copter sequence - 42 seconds! 
What a waste of time having to go 
through that rigmarole every 
time a new game is started. Over- 
all, not something to shout too 
loudly about although, knowing 
my luck, everyone will think it a 
hit and I'll be left with egg on my 
face. It could be good if everything 
was speeded up by a factor of two 
and the unnecessary bits cut out - 
enough said. Not my cup of tea. 


He's big, he's butch and he's 
bulky - even in pixels! I always 
treat games which have been 
based on films with some scepti- 
cism, but I was pleasantly sur- 
prised by Predator. The animation 
is quite effective, particularly the 
helicopter sequence, and the 
character's running motion is un- 
mistakably Schwarzenegger. 
Undoubtedly, Predator is gung- 
ho, violent and bloody, butthereis 
an underlying aspect of strategy 
which, when correctly employed, 
increases your success In the 
game. The weaponry exchange is 
an interesting feature and the 
easily exhaustible ammunition 
forces you to use the weapons 
wisely. There are a number of fail- 
ings in Predator, such as the heli- 
copter scene at the beginning of 
the game, which is a novelty at 
first, but after the third or fourth 
time, becomes time-wasting and 
tedious. Additionally, the seem- 
ingly menacing alien 's weaponry 
is easily avoidable, while a pa- 
thetic flock of birds prove to be the 
greatest hazard in the entire 

Watch the bushes tor the hidden enemy 

Schaeter finds more bullets lo dodge 



Believe it or not, 
Crafton and Xunk are 
not the Norwegian 
entrants for the 
Eurooision song con- 
test, they are 
characters from a 
bizarre game who have 
gained their French 
creator, Par Remi Her- 
bulot, a cult following. 

Xunks, Stiffians and Sivappis? I 
think Monsieur Herbulot must 
have been under the influence of a 
few glasses ofBeaujolais when he 
dreamt up this game. However, 
although Get Dexter 2 could be 
described as a freak show on disk, 
U contains all the necessary ingre- 
dients that constitute a successful 
arcade adventure. The game- 
play, like the behaviour of the 
Ouaks, is often frenetic, thanks to 
a sea of creatures that constantly 
swarm around Dexter's legs and 
chip away at his energy levels. 
However, the fault with the con- 
trols is an obvious oversight, 
which causes unnecessary frus- 
tration and detracts from an other- 
wise pleasing game. Although 
weird, bizarre and baffling are all 
words which could be used to 
describe this game, challenging, 
puzzling and amusing are equally 
apt. To all arcade adventurers, 
'Get Dexter 2V 

Monsieur Herbulot appears to have a 
fascination for one-legged dogs called 
Xunks and all manner of freakish 
humanoids. Evidently, his feverish 
mind has created an equally outland- 
ish menagerie of creatures for his 
latest production. The ST version of 
the original Get Dexter was called 
Crafton and Xunk, and so I presume 
that Get Dexter 2 is the sequel. Dexter, 
we are informed, is in the land of a 
race of people called the Swappis and 
his primary task is to gain their 
confidence so that he can travel safely 
through their secret access to the land 
of the Antines. 

Although Dexter can be con- 
trolled with joystick or mouse, I had to 
combine the two in order to play the 
game effectively. The joystick, as 
usual, offers the most responsive 
directional controls but, trying to pick 
up the objects which must be collected 
throughout the game causes some 
frustration. I overcame this problem by 
controlling Dexter's movement with 
the joystick and, on reaching an 
object, clicking the mouse button to 
pick the item up and store it in an 
inventory beneath the game screen. 
Some of these objects are relevant to 
solving the game, while others, such 
as dynamite, mousetraps and guns, 
protect you from your adversaries. The 
game screen is drawn in 30/60 degree 
isometric projection, which creates a 
three-dimensional effect, and Dexter 
can be moved in any direction until he 
arrives at an invisible border between 
the visible and adjacent screen. Then, 
with the faithful Xunk rushing to his 
heel, Dexter moves to the next loca- 
tion. Although Xunk is the only 
character to have retained his name 
and identity from the original ST 
game, he spends most of his time 

Get Dexter2 is the follow-up to Ere 
Informatique's, Crafton and 
Xunk. I found the game somewhat 
tiresome. After the initial, "Oooh, 
this one look's different!", Get 
Dexter falls into the rather mun- 
dane arcade adventure slot. Sure 
enough, the graphics are welt 
above average, and the 
soundtrack and accompanying 
effects are aurally pleasing. The 
gameplay, however. Is somewhat 
difficult to master. The dual con- 
trol between mouse and key- 
board, or joystick and keyboard, 
together with the effect of the 3D 
style graphics, led to my becom- 
ing a little confused. To be fair, I 
could not recommend Get Dexter; 
still, if you enjoyed Crafton and 
Xunk, I see no reason why this 
latest title shouldn't find its way 
into your software collection. 

bouncing around on one leg, chasing 
sticks and being distracted by pretty 
Xunkettes. Therefore, apart from 
serving as some amusement, his 
presence is quite superfluous to the 

A 'Trust' gauge monitors the 
increase or decrease in the confidence 
that the Swappis invest in Dexter, 
which is dependent on his success at 
finding the answers to three tests. 
Monsieur Herbulot and Infogrames are 
also gauging their trust in the com- 
puter-press and, understandably, they 
have requested that software reviewers 
do not disclose too many details about 
the game. The tasks are hidden within 
the Swappi houses and, avoiding the 
swarm of weird creatures which crawl 
across the ground, you must direct 

Come into my parlour! 

Dexter finds a pressie. Must be his lucky day! 



Getting a breath of fresh air. 

TRUST 18k SCORE 08286 

Dexter into the first house. On discov- 
ering the task, a message window 
appears in the centre of the screen 
stating that Dexter must discover 
where the Swappis originate from. 
With the faithful Xunk at his heels, 
Dexter sets off on a quite extraordinary 

'The Big Book' describes how 
the Great Swappi leads his people to 
this strange land and how his spirit is 
trapped somewhere in the game. 
Before Dexter can travel to the Anti- 
nes, he must find four statuettes which 
are hidden in various locations in the 
game, take them to a certain holy 
place and put them on top of pillars 
within the building. At once, the Great 
Swappi appears and presents Dexter 
with The Big Book' and you must 
retrace your steps and return the book 
to the Swappis. Immediately, their 
increased confidence in Dexter is 
indicated on the Trust gauge. These 
troublesome Swappis then declare that 
they are ill and Dexter's next task is to 
find the cure. You must locate a 
machine, find and combine the two 
correct ingredients, make a potion and 
return it to the ailing yellow Swappis. 
The Trust gauge increases further and 
you must discover the Swappi's final 

request: 'We've lost our Ouak! Who 
can get him back?' An Ouak, it 
transpires, is a Swappi dog who has 
been subject to metabolic tests at the 
hands of the nasty Stiffians. As a result 
of these experiments, the Ouaks 
change from sane to frenetic simply by 
moving through a portico in one of the 
screens. You must entice a frenetic 
Ouak back to the Swappi's garden 
with a certain object, which can be 
found elsewhere in the game. But what 

After completing the final test, 
the Trust gauge should indicate that 
the Swappis have full confidence in 
Dexter and, finally, he can pass 
through their secret passage and into 
the Antines. This section of the game 
looks suspiciously similar to Crafton 
and Xunk and, avoiding an even more 
intense presence of unusual creatures, 
Dexter must locate a grave which is 
surrounded by ten crystals. Five of the 
crystals play a short tune and, after 
the final note, a message appears on 
screen stating that you must repro- 
duce the tune perfectly to free the 
occupant of the grave. Using the other 
five crystals, Dexter must play the 
tune correctly. What happens next is 
for you to discover! 







1 040ST 

/ found Get Dexter II eery hard to 
get into, thus somewhat spoiling 
my initial impressions. However, 
after great perseverance, the 
game did start to grow on me. The 
graphics are rather good, with the 
animation especially so. The 
sound effects were, however, 
rather sparse and this led to a very 
quiet game. The game itself is like 
a who's who of computer-gener- 
ated freaks and, without the 
monks and good old (Ted?) Dexter 
himself, you could be forgiven for 
thinking that you had gone com- 
pletely off your rocker, what with 
hopping feet with eyes and huge, 
purple, sixteen-legged bugs. All 
in alt, a game that you must get 
your hands on before buying, as 
you'll either love it or hate it. 

PHONE: 01-364 0123 
PRICE: £19.95 







Get Dexter's option screen 

Dexter searching within a church 



■ ■§ ■ ■ 1NFOGRAMES ■ 

The future of mankind 

is at stake; the course 

of history could be 

irreversibly and 

horribly altered! 

In the latest addition to the so-called Time 
Troubleshooter series, Lee Enfield is trans- 
ported back to the thirteenth century in The 
Tournament of Death. As usual, he is pitted 
against his arch-enemy the Evil Yellow 
Shadow who, on this occasion, has stolen 
the Holy Shroud and intends to proclaim 
himself Pope. The game, we are told, takes 
place in the Castle of the Count of Savoy 
and the task is to locate the Holy Shroud 
before that ghastly Shadow commits the 
greatest sacrilege and destroys it. The 
screen is dominated by a still portrait of a 
thirteenth century knight who is being 
pursued by a fearsome ogre brandishing a 
dagger, while the actual game-screen is a 
little less obtrusive and occupies a mere 
fraction of the screen. Initially, it is used as 
a message window containing a scenario 
which can be cleared to reveal the game- 
screen by pressing the firebutton. 

Dressed in blue jeans and a red 
shirt, Lee Enfield waits conspicuously for 

PHONE: 01-364 0123 
PRICE: £19.95 


SOUND :27% 





some guidance in this dark and murky 
thirteenth-century setting. The game scrolls 
horizontally through the rooms within the 
castle, which are linked by doorways. Each 
room is three dimensional and so has some 
depth to it. Therefore, in addition to 
manoeuvring Lee horizontally across the 
screen, he can also be moved to the front 
or back of the room. Each room has an 
entrance and exit, usually located at either 
side of the room but occasionally, at the 
back. Lee must be positioned in front of the 
exit in order to travel into the adjacent 
room. The task in hand is to search for 
clues to the location of the Holy Shroud and 
so every object in each room must be 

The majority of rooms contain a 
piece of furniture, a cask or chest that can 
be searched by drawing near to the object 
and pressing the firebutton. The hidden 
item is briefly highlighted on screen and 
then stored in an inventory beneath. Certain 
objects are reputed to shape the outcome 
of the game, while others are supposed to 
aid your progress. As you might expect, the 
search is hindered by a weird collection of 
adversaries, which include the Yellow 
Shadow's guards, foot soldiers, hooded 
fiends and even the occasional grizzly bear. 
If an adversary lurks unseen in an adjacent 
room, a window appears within the game- 
screen and the action is temporarily 
suspended. With the aid of a sinister 
silhouette in a tunnel, this window warns 
that an enemy lurks unseen in the next 
room. Any confrontation with the enemy 
depletes Lee's energy, which is indicated 
by a power-gauge at the side of the screen. 
Your only defence against the foe is to 
press the firebutton and wrench the joystick 
to the right, which sends out an ineffective 

The presence of the enemy in a 
particular room is a good indication that 
there is something worth searching for. 
However, due to poor response from the 
controls, avoiding and escaping your many 
foes is quite frustrating. Usually in multi- 
screen games, you can escape from an 
awkward situation by simply moving to an 
adjacent room. But in this case, the bears, 

\nfogrames have crammed a 
game of biblical proportions in- 
side a game-screen the size of a 
pocket edition of the New Testa- 
ment. The Tournament of Death 
has the smallest game-screen I 
haue ever seen and, as a result, 
you never quite enter into the 
spirit of the game. The controls are 
dull and indistinct, causing frus- 
tration rather than excitement. 
Additionally, the constant music 
which accompanies the game is 
inapt and, indeed, intolerable and 
fails to compensate for the total 
lack of sound effects. The combi- 
nation of these failings contribute 
to a game which yields little enter- 
tainment and no satisfaction. 

The whole game is compacted 
down to the bottom right-hand 
corner of the screen - a free magni- 
fying glass would have come in 
handy! The control over Lee En- 
field is also rather difficult, with 
the computer appearing to store 
my joystick inputs resulting in 
poor old Lee ends up running all 
ooer the place unnecessarily. 
With all these difficulties, it was 
no wonder that I was only ever 
capable of running around, busily 
bumping into walls, whilst ogres 
and Grim Reaper-type beings set 
about destroying me with ease. 
This game can simply be summed 
up in two words; below average. 
Not worth raiding your piggy- 
bank for. 

guards and hooded fiends tenaciously 
follow you from one room to the next. Once 
Lee is involved in a physical confrontation, 
you lose complete control of the joystick 
and the energy gauge slides to the base of 
the screen. Confusingly, he is then envel- 
oped in a large bubble which proceeds to 
roll through the castle. Again, the game- 
screen becomes a message window, which 
explains that an unseen guardian has 
intervened in the game. 

The most ennoying feature of the game is the tiny playing area... 

...however, the playing area Itself is highly detailed 



309 Goldhawk Rd, Shepherds Bush, London W12 8EZ 



If you wish to purchase any product from our list and 
find that you can buy the same product cheaper from 
another mail order company, simply enclose the 
lower amount, stating the name of the other com- 
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current issue). Price Promise does not apply to other 
companies "Special Offers". 


Ac© H ^ 

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Music Stud* 

Nine Pnncess Amber 

Nm^a , 

Nord * Ben 

NoHh Star 

Obliterate* , , 

Ooru B 

-J \J -i -ttP"t"attl-M"'l1M|...ll".P-M"lt«"l.lltlltl 


Pawn ,„ 

Perlect Match 




Pink Panther 

Platoon M 

Plundered Hearts 


Potce Ouesl 

Pool , 

Pool / Shutlle Board 

Powerplay -.„*«,* 

Predator _. 

k lt*.l**.tIll**.*ttl*.tt*.l**H**t*t* 

Projcfcl Stealth Fighttr 



Return to Genesis 

Ring ol Zilfcn »»* 

Road Runner , ^ 

RoadwarEinopa . 

R z-.,'] ■-..!■ : 

Rolling Thunder « 


Scenery 0«sk 7 or XI , 


.*....*..*.........* . T — *«... 


Scrabtfe Detu«e 

Sentinel -.»«• 

Shadow Gate 


Sidewalk .,, M MM » 

SttentServce .— 

»'*. iti ♦* 

Stlicon Oreoms 


Space Prfol 

Space Ouesl 

Space Quest ti 

£19 99 
£24 95 
.£19 95 
£24 95 
£24 99 
....£•.- .„ 
£19 95 
£19 99 

£9 99 
£29 99 
£24 95 

£9 95 

£9 95 

£9 99 
£24 99 
£19 95 
£24 95 
£24 95 
£24 95 

£9 95 
£24 99 
£24 99 
£14 99 

£9 95 
£24 95 
£24 99 
£24 99 
£24 99 
£29 95 
£24 95 
£29 95 
£24 95 
£24 99 
£24 95 

£12 95 
£15 99 
£15 95 

£6 99 
£19 99 

£9 99 
£12 99 
£12 99 

£6 99 

£9 50 
£23 50 

£12 99 

£6 99 
£12 95 

£9 50 



£9 50 

£9 99 
£15 99 
£12 95 
£12 95 

£9 99 


Star Trek ..^ M . 

Star Wa/s , 



Strike Force Harrier .. 

Sub Bailie Sim 

S u pe rSprint 


Teriamejc ». 

Terror Pods ... 


Thunder . . . 


....£24 95 
...,£19 99 
....£19 99 

. .£29 99 
....£24 95 

...£24 99 
....£14 99 
....£19 95 
....£24 95 
....£19 95 
—539 99 

■»t*-t-f"ii»t- tif 

Top Gun ^ 

Tour Oe Force ... 


Tnvial Pursuits ■♦. 

TT Racet 

Turbo ST , 

Ultima Ml 

Universal Military Sim 


Vampires Empire 



.....*»*.. ..| 

Wheie Time Stood SMt , 

Winter O»ympuj0 


Woildft Greatesi Epyx (4 groat sporls Mtcs> 

Xenon ^...... + 

Xevous , 


Bally Moo „ 


Hackor , 

Hacker ti _. 

inleidei ™™, 


M<nd Snadow 


PianellaA ,--«.. 

Sorcerer ._ _«««. 

Siar Cross „ 


Tass T»me 


Wishbnnger „». 

Wilness.. * * 

Zork t. II of III 




Devpac ST ^ w „ 

O-g* Drum 

Fast Bisk; (ROM) 

Fast Basic (Drsk) 

Frim Director 

Fleet Si. PuMsnet 


Pa»nl Works 

...£19 95 
...£19 99 
...£24 95 

..£19 95 

..£24 95 
. £24 95 
...CI 9 95 
..£19 95 

. £24 95 
..£29 99 
..£19 95 
£24 99 

. £29 99 
£24 99 
...£29 99 
..£29 99 
..£29 59 

£29 99 
£29 99 
£29 99 
£29 99 

....... T-'* * *.«.....*. 

di-tt" ttt iiitt i it a 

Pro Sound Des*gne* ... Tt 

Pro Spr<10 Designer 

Real t*me clock fca/1) 

Sates Ledger 

Saved ^ 

ST Replay 

Stock Control.-, ,„, 


Superoase Persona* . 
Tool Kit — - 

£29 99 


£49 95 

..£49 95 

£24 95 






£34 99 




...E49 00 

.£29 95 

..£79 95 


...£49 95 

..£99 95 

£29 95 

£12 99 
£19 99 
£15 99 
£15 99 

£15 99 
£12 95 
£27 50 
£12 99 

£6 50 
£15 99 
£15 95 
£12 95 
£20 99 



£6 99 

£6 99 

..,£7 99 

..£7 99 



£7 99 

.£7 99 

£7 99 

£7 99 

...£7 99 

..£7 99 

...£7 99 


£7 99 

...£6 99 
£37 50 
£37 50 
£67 50 
£66 50 
£26 50 
£45 00 
£37 50 
£22 50 
£60 00 


£37 50 
£74 99 
£22 50 


Please send me the following titles. BLOCK capitals please! 

Type of computer . 



Total Enclosed £ 




I 4 f t I t 4 

I I I * * t I * * 


Tel. No: 

Please make cheques or postal orders payable to BARGAIN SOFTWARE 

Prices include P.&P. within the U.K. Europe please add £0.75 per tape 
Elsewhere please add £1 .00 extra per tape 

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